Maldives is "sensitive" to India's concerns over peace and security in the Indian Ocean region -- this will be the message its foreign minister Mohamed Asim is expected to convey during his meetings with the Indian leadership tomorrow amidst a strain in ties. Asim, who is also Maldivian president Abdulla Yameen's special envoy, arrived here today on a three-day visit during which he will call on Prime Minister Narendra Modi and hold talks with his Indian counterpart Sushma Swaraj. According to sources, the visiting leader will again extend invitation to Modi to visit the island nation. The visit comes amidst a strain in bilateral ties over a number of issues, including signing of an FTA between Maldives and China. India had already made it clear that it expects that as a close and friendly neighbour, the island nation will be sensitive to its concerns in keeping with its 'India First' policy.
The Indian statement had come in response to a query on Maldives-China FTA. There will be a reiteration that Maldives will not undertake any activity which will harm Indian interests and it will also be conveyed that the country is "sensitive" to India's concerns over peace and security in the Indian Ocean region, the sources said. Maldivian government has also been seeking full implementation of India's "neighbourhood first" policy towards it.
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