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Indian PM Modi accepts invitation to attend Solih's inauguration

Fathmath Shaahunaz
09 November 2018, MVT 15:18
This handout photo released by India's Press Information Bureau and taken on September 24, 2018, shows Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi (R) addressing a gathering at the inauguration of the Pakyong Airport in Gangtok. / AFP PHOTO / PIB / Handout /
Fathmath Shaahunaz
09 November 2018, MVT 15:18

India on Friday announced that Prime Minister Narendra Modi will attend the presidential inauguration of Maldives' President-Elect Ibrahim Mohamed Solih.

Speaking at a press conference, India's Ministry of External Affairs' spokesperson Raveesh Kumar confirmed that Modi has accepted Solih's invitation to his oath taking ceremony, and that the prime minister hoped to strengthen India's ties with the new government of Maldives under India's "neighbours first" policy.

However, Kumar disclosed that Modi's visit to Maldives will be short, with the prime minister scheduled to depart on the same day, soon after the new president is sworn in.

Solih's presidential inauguration is slated for November 17, at the National Stadium in capital Male.

Ties between Maldives and India had soured during the tenure of outgoing President Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom. As Maldives is the only nation Modi did not visit after he assumed office, this will mark Modi's first official visit to the archipelago.

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