FM Zameer: President has proven Maldives can singly uphold its independence

Foreign Minister Moosa Zameer speaks at Th. Madifushi on February 6, 2024. (Photo/President's Office)

Foreign Minister Moosa Zameer, on Tuesday, remarked President Dr. Mohamed Muizzu has proven to foreign nations that the Maldives is singly capable of upholding its independence.

The minister is accompanying President Muizzu on a tour of Thaa Atoll. They visited Madifushi as part of their tour on Tuesday. Speaking to the residents at the island, Minister Zameer noted President Muizzu’s decision to surveil Maldives’ territorial waters round the clock, adding the idea had not been thought by any former leaders.

In this regard, Minister Zameer said it had been previously engrained that the Maldives should depend on some other party to uphold its independence; a belief which he said President Muizzu has erased.

He also said relations with other nations have improved since President Muizzu assumed office.

Underscoring that he had the chance to work with President Muizzu in former president Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayyoom’s cabinet – Minister Zameer said President Muizzu became a diplomat from an engineer.

“Back then, he stood out to me as a very capable engineer. A very capable person in implementing projects,” he said.

On the contrary, he said President Muizzu is now seen capably discharging the duties of a diplomat since he assumed office.

As an example, he pointed out the course of action President Muizzu had followed with respect to expelling the Indian troops in the Maldives and how much relations with other nations had been strengthened.

“What I am trying to say is that Maldives, in the diplomatic sector and relations with others, is at a high level. This is due to the long-term thinking and the instructions of the president,” he said.

While delivering his first presidential address at the opening sitting of the last session of the ongoing 19th parliament on Monday – President Muizzu said that the Maldivian military’s capabilities will be further strengthened over the course of this year which will pave way for round-the-clock surveillance capabilities over the nation's 900,000-square-kilometre EEZ.

He added that he is guided by his ‘pro-Maldives’ principle in safeguarding our nation's sovereignty, while placing the primary commitment in governance on the welfare of the people and the nation at the forefront.

The remarks come after armed Indian soldiers, aboard a military ship that had been inside Maldivian territory without permit from the relevant authorities, stormed multiple local fishing boats on two separate occasions.  

The government has expressed discontent over the incident and has pledged to improve surveillance of Maldives’ maritime territory.