The Maldives Government has denied media reports which stated that India had offered $1 billion to Maldives in exchange for the deployment of Indian troops in the island nation.
The Minister for Foreign Affairs Abdulla Shahid said that the territory of Maldives would not be used for the establishment of any foreign military bases.
Shahid took to his twitter account and tweeted, “Categorically refute media reports alleging that government is planning to allow the establishment of an Indian military base in Maldives in exchange for financial assistance or other material benefits. It is baseless and aimed at discrediting the government as it starts to rebuild good relations with its neighbours and the rest of the international community.”
He further said, “Govt. assures the people, that it will always act in the national interest of Maldives and will not undertake any international engagement that will compromise the sovereignty and independence of the country.”
Shahid’s reaction came after a news article published in a Japanese Daily, NIKKIE Asian Review, which stated that India offered Maldives $1 billion in exchange for stronger security ties.
During his official visit to New Delhi, Shahid met his counterpart Sushma Swaraj and Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman.
He described India as time-tested and a trusted partner. Shahid showed commitment to strengthen bilateral trade ties between the two countries.