Maldives and India have reaffirmed counter-terrorism cooperation as an important aspect of maintaining security in the Indian Ocean Region (IOR).
Maldives and India strongly condemned terrorism in all its forms and manifestations including cross-border terrorism, during the Second Meeting of the Joint Working Group on Counter Terrorism, Countering Violent Extremism and De-Radicalization between Maldives and India, held in Male’ on July 24, 2023.
During the meeting, both the countries emphasized on the need for strengthening international cooperation to combat terrorism in a comprehensive and sustained manner. Reaffirming counter-terrorism cooperation as an important aspect of maintaining security in the Indian Ocean Region, both sides reviewed threats posed by terrorist entities that are under UN sanctions and emphasized the need for concerted action against all terrorist networks. They underlined the urgent need for all countries to take immediate, sustained, verifiable, and irreversible action to ensure that no territory under their control is used for terrorist attacks on others and to expeditiously bring to justice the perpetrators of such attacks.
Additionally, both countries, shared their experiences in combating terrorism and extremism, and exchanged views on various areas of cooperation including countering radicalization and violent extremism, combating financing of terrorism, preventing exploitation of the internet and cyberspace for terrorism and violent extremism, mutual information sharing, capacity building and establishing institutional linkages between law enforcement agencies, security forces, customs, immigration and other relevant agencies. Further, the two sides exchanged views on enhancing bilateral cooperation against organized crime and narcotics, repatriation, rehabilitation, and reintegration of returnees.
Furthermore, both sides pledged to further strengthen cooperation that will include further assistance and capacity building for the security and law enforcement agencies and other relevant agencies of the Maldives as well as collaboration and the exchange of best practices in the areas of counter-terrorism, preventing and countering of violent extremism including strategic communication, and de-radicalization. The two sides also reaffirmed their commitment to strengthen cooperation and enhancing dialogues in multilateral fora through United Nations and at other global and regional platforms such as the Colombo Security Conclave (CSC).
The Maldivian delegation was led by Foreign Secretary, Ahmed Latheef, and the Indian delegation was led by Secretary (West) Sanjay Verma, Ministry of External Affairs, Government of India.
The Indian delegation will visit the National Counter Terrorism Centre (NCTC) during their stay in Male’.