Maldives ordered all Indian personnel to leave the country by March 15.

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Today, the president of the Maldives has ordered for all Indian troops to leave the island country by the 15th of March, 2024.

Before President Muhammad Muizzu came to power, it was said that he would expel Indian personnel from the country. In November 2023, Muizzu requested India to withdraw its troops. After this request, a statement was released from the President’s office.

“The president noted that at the presidential election held in September, the Maldivian people had given him a strong mandate to make the request to India and expressed hope that India will honor the democratic will of the people of the Maldives,” the statement said.

As it is clear from this statement that Muizzu was voted by the people on the anti-India campaign. He became the President on 17 November 2023. He is the biggest supporter of China among Maldivian politicians. A day after he was sworn in as president, he requested Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi to withdraw Indian troops from his country. The following month in December, Muizzu and Modi met on the sidelines of COP 28 in Dubai where they discussed the issue.

“The president further shared that after a series of constructive meetings and dialogues with the Indian government, an agreement has been reached to withdraw Indian military personnel, which is currently in progress at a technical level,” Muizzu’s office said after the COP28 conference.

According to Maldivian officials, there are 77 Indian defense personnel in Maldives who provide assistance in various relief and anti-drug trafficking activities. Some Indian personnel operate helicopters which are used for emergency evacuation. These troops have conducted more than 500 medical evacuations over the past five years.

After the new government came to power, not only the issue of the Indian defense personnel was arose, but more than 100 agreements with India were revised. These agreements were signed by the government of former President Ibrahim Soleh.

“The Maldives is reviewing over 100 agreements, including in areas of defense and security, that were signed between the previous Ibrahim Mohamed Solih-led government and New Delhi,” a senior Maldivian official said on November 19.

Muizzu had made many promises to the people of Maldives during the campaign to rid the country of Indian influence, of which the first promise is close to being fulfilled and after March 15, there will not be a single Indian military personnel in the Maldives.

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