Sushma meets Maldives counterpart

Male, Oct 10 (IANS) India’s External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj on Saturday held talks with her Maldivian counterpart Dunya Maumoon here.

“Women who lead the way. EAM @SushmaSwaraj with her counterpart Maldives FM Dunya Maumoon in a tete-a-tete,” tweeted external affairs ministry spokesperson Vikas Swarup.

Sushma Swaraj is here on a two-day visit to attend the India-Maldives Joint Commission meeting.

Earlier, Sushma Swaraj addressed the Indian community in Male and urged them “to contribute to flagship schemes like Make in India, Digital India, Clean Ganga, Swachh Bharat etc,” he tweeted.

In her address, she said “India is making its voice heard in international fora and the world is listening”.

Sushma Swaraj’s visit to the Maldives comes amid rising international calls demanding the release of jailed former president Mohamed Nasheed.

On Thursday, India’s external affairs ministry had said Sushma Swaraj will discuss defence and security ties apart from cooperation in a range of areas including energy.

On the jailing of Nasheed, the ministry spokesperson said: “We hope that the outcome will be seen by everybody as fair. The outcome must be seen to be fair.”

Former Maldivian vice president Mohamed Jameel Ahmed tweeted on Saturday: “I call upon Prez Yameen to release Prez Nasheed & all other political prisoners & obey international legal obligations.”

“Prez Yameen must allow democracy to function in the Maldives, stop arrest & detention of politicians,” he posted.

Amnesty India tweeted: “During #Maldives visit, @SushmaSwaraj should call for immediate release of former Pres #Nasheed who was arrested after grossly unfair trial.”

“#Maldives should heed recent call of UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention to immediately release former President #Nasheed @SushmaSwaraj,” the rights group said.

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