HomeIndiaIndia and the worldBack From China, Maldives President Tells India To Stop Being A Bully, Withdraw Troops

Back From China, Maldives President Tells India To Stop Being A Bully, Withdraw Troops

Back From China, Maldives President Tells India To Stop Being A Bully, Withdraw Troops

Back From China, Maldives President Tells India To Stop Being A Bully, Withdraw Troops

MALE, (IANS) – Maldives President Mohamed Muizzu has asked India to withdraw its military personnel, estimated at 88 personnel, from the Indian Ocean archipelago by mid-March.

A high-level core group, set by both nations, to negotiate the withdrawal of troops held its first meeting at the Foreign Ministry in Male on January 15 with Indian High Commissioner Munu Mahawar present, officials said, adding that the agenda for the meeting was the request to withdraw troops by mid-March.

“Indian military personnel cannot stay in the Maldives. This is the policy of President Dr. Mohamed Muizzu and that of this administration,” a spokesperson said.

President Muizzu had, during his presidential campaign, asserted that he would accomplish the removal of Indian troops from the Maldives, and had made a formal request to India to withdraw its military personnel soon after assuming office.

Amid the row over three junior ministers’ allegedly derogatory remarks against Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi over his Lakshwadeep visit, the Maldives President, talking to the press on January 13 after his return from a five-day state visit to China, without naming India, made a further jab at it.

“We may be small, but that doesn’t give you the license to bully us.”

He also announced plans to reduce the country’s dependency on India, including securing imports of essential food commodities and medicine and consumables from other countries.

“We aren’t in anyone’s backyard. We are an independent and sovereign state,” he told reporters at the Velana International Airport.

He said that no country has the right to exert influence over the domestic affairs of a country, regardless of its size, and vowed that he would not allow any external influence on the domestic affairs of the Maldives.

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  • Modern version of Aurangazeb

    January 15, 2024
    • Let me first apologize to the editor for what I am going to say: SORRY!

      The Journalists are all lost on this issue. This is not an India issue. This is a US and UK issue. China is doing this to balance US and UK presence in the Indian Ocean. India has enough presence over the area. India went into the Maldives to keep China away.

      This is not a simple Maldives/India problem. It is very complex and involves USA/UK and the west and Africa and Middle East, more than we think.

      US and UK have a base in Diego Garcia. Maldives is between this base and India. I don’t think Maldives will exist if China uses this island for anything but business. China needs a port in the Indian Ocean where its shipping can dock, refuel and rearrange Cargo, which is done by Singapore now. It needs to have options so in case of economic sanctions it is self reliant. The future wars will be economic. In fact the economic war between US/UK and China has begun just like one between USA/UK and Russia in Ukraine. UK tried to get India to go full on with China, but the Modi Administration is not the dumb Zelensky Govt. that had an agreement with Russia ready to sign and Boris of UK said NO, can’t sign. And Zelensky did not sign thinking he had USA/Uk on their side.

      So, Maldives is a problem for India but a bigger problem for the west whose shipping. Not for Indian shipping. China focused on Sri Lanka and Bangladesh but did not work. Myannamar became challenging too. China friendly military regime is failing.

      The Pearl of Strings mean nothing when you have nuclear armed friends and foes. Sri Lanka and Bangladesh are the future Maldavian Problem. They will leverage this to get FREE MONEY from the west and India. I hope instead they are told; GO FORWARD, just know this that if your country is used for military purpose against India and the West, three nukes strategically placed will turn the country into the best jungles in a 100 years; devoid of people. That is what you do in a multi-country war, remove the hemorrhoids and focus on the main war. However, if China takes over Maldives and declares it Chinese territory, there is nothing the world can do. MAldives is too small and it will take China two weeks to place every citizen on the plane and move them to Xinxiang and make Maldives their military base like Diego Garcia. That is the real fear that no one talks off.

      January 15, 2024
  • My opinion:
    India should walk away. Inform the Maldivians that the military personal will leave as soon as India is paid back for all the grants, loans and donations that were provided as part of the agreement for Indian operations on Maldivian soil. If not India continues to stay and in fact will position more military personal on the island and around the island. And Maldives can pound sand. So, borrow the billions and pay up and India will pack up and leave.

    Then India must leave including its consulate and
    1) Place a fee of Rs. 10 lacs on every traveler that visits Maldives as compensation for the losses from the agreement
    2) Place a 1000% import duty on all products from India
    3) Place a 20% tax on all product and service imports into India from countries that provide military/defense help to Maldives

    And sit back and watch the fund. The island is sinking as the sea levels rise.

    Advantage: India and Lakshadweep in particular
    Disadvantage: US and Uk and Diego Garcia in particular (see my post in a response above).

    January 15, 2024

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