Maldives, India and Sri Lanka have agreed to increase collaboration on four key areas to strengthen security in the Indian Ocean region.
The agreement was reached at a virtual meeting attended by top security officials from the three countries last Wednesday.
The meeting was attended by Secretary of National Security Advisor’s Office of the Maldivian President’s Office, Aishath Nooshin Waheed; Chief of Defense Staff and Commander of Army of Sri Lanka, General LHSC Silva, and Security National Security Advisor of India Pankaj Saran.
Citing a statement released by the Indian High Commission in Colombo, The Hindu reported that the three countries agreed to increase collaboration in marine safety and security, terrorism and radicalization, trafficking and organized crime, and cyber security.
The officials discussed specific proposals for cooperation in each area, including joint exercises and training.
The meeting on Wednesday comes nine months after Maldivian Defense Minister Mariya Ahmed Didi, Indian National Security Advisor Ajit Doval and Secretary to Sri Lanka’s Ministry of Defense, Kamal Gunaratne met in Colombo and agreed to expand the scope of intelligence sharing between the three countries.
The meeting in November 2020 marked the revival of NSA-level trilateral talks on maritime security in the Indian Ocean Region after a gap of six years.