Maldives faced many challenges in the journey to establish itself in the international arena, says Minister of Foreign Affairs Abdulla Shahid.
He said this while delivering the 43rd Sapru House Lecture at the Indian Council of World Affairs in New Delhi, on Tuesday.
The 43rd Sapru House Lecture was delivered at the Indian Council of World Affairs on the topic “The Power of Small: The Maldives Story”.
Shedding light on how Maldives as a small island state steered through the perils of international diplomacy through adapting and adjusting by means of successful strategies, FM Shahid detailed the pressing challenges faced by small island states like the Maldives in having the chance to serve in significant roles in the multilateral arena.
Further, he shed light on the sentiment that surfaced when Maldives applied for membership of the United Nations (UN) with questions raised about its ability to undertake the responsibilities of a productive member of the international community and its capacity to engage constructively.
Stressing that the principles preserved in the UN Charter offered small states an equal footing in multilateralism, the Maldivian foreign minister highlighted how the Maldives began implementing an independent foreign policy immediately after signing independence in 1965 and how the Maldives adopted key strategies to adapt to the circumstances.
He also shed light on the three approaches Maldives adopted, including the “principled”, “pragmatic” and the “prioritization” approaches which confirmed how a small state can defend itself and their interests, and defend others in front of bigger states in global arena.
The 43rd Sapru House Lecture was pioneered and moderated by Director General of the Indian Council of World Affairs Ambassador Vijay Thakur Singh.
Established in 1943, the Indian Council for World Affairs is an Indian think tank.
The Maldivian foreign minister’s visit is in keeping with the tradition of high-level exchanges between the two neighboring countries.
The visit is expected to mirror the enhancing of bilateral ties between the two countries with the signing of several Memorandums of Understanding (MoUs) exchanged in the field of socioeconomic cooperation on Tuesday.
Bilateral Secretary Dr. Hala Hameed, Joint Secretary Abdul Waris Saeed and senior officials at the foreign ministry are accompanying the foreign minister during the visit.