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Sri Lanka endorses Maldives' participation in CHOGM 2020

Mariyam Malsa
29 September 2019, MVT 17:02
Sri Lankan Foreign Secretary Ravinatha Aryasinha. PHOTO: MIHAARU
Mariyam Malsa
29 September 2019, MVT 17:02

Sri Lanka endorsed Maldives' bid to rejoin the Commonwealth of Nations and expressed support for the country participating in the upcoming Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM).

Speaking at a sideline meeting of the 74th United Nations General Assembly (UNGA), Sri Lankan Foreign Secretary Ravinatha Aryasinha backed Maldives' full participation in the meeting which is slated to be held in Rwanda during 2020.

"As a close neighbour and a fellow South Asian nation, Sri Lanka enjoys strong bilateral ties with the Maldives, and it is gratifying that one of the primary initiatives embarked upon by the new Maldivian administration last year was to convey its intention to re-join the Commonwealth".

The Foreign Secretary highlighted that the Commonwealth delegation which visited Maldives in January delivered favourable feedback concerning internal conditions.

Maldives initially joined the Commonwealth on July 9, 1982, leaving on October 13, 2016, during the tenure of former President Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom, after 34 years as a member of the intergovernmental organization.

Yameen dissolved the membership claiming that the organization was meddling with the domestic affairs of the country and that there was discrimination between other member states.

Re-joining the Commonwealth is a key priority of the current administration's agenda. President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih officially requested to rejoin the Commonwealth in December 2018.

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