Maldivian Prez Waheed to visit India on May 11
A senior Maldivian government source told PTI that the President would leave Male on May 11. "The defence cooperation between Maldives and India would be a key issue during the president`s visit," the source said. Waheed, the then vice president, had succeeded Mohamed Nasheed as President, who was ousted on February 7 after weeks of public protests following his action to arrest a judge.
Nasheed claimed he was removed in a "coup" and his party has urged an independent investigation into the events of February 7. India sent its Foreign Secretary Ranjan Mathai to defuse tensions immediately after the upheaval and under a deal brokered by him the government announced that it will hold early elections. However, the Maldivian Democratic Party`s call for early elections to end the political impasse has been resisted by Waheed`s administration.
Waheed`s advisor Hassan Saeed said a number of issues will be discussed during the President`s visit. He said assurances of close ties between the two countries will be reiterated. "Maldives and India have close ties. This is President`s first visit to any foreign country. He has actually delayed invitations from other friendly countries to come to India first," Saeed said.