President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih will touch down in Maldives on Saturday, following the conclusion of his official state visit to Qatar and Bangladesh.
The president was accompanied by the First Lady, Fazna Ahmed, as well as a high-level delegation comprising of Abdulla Shahid, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Aishath Nahula, Minister of Transport and Civil Aviation, Ali Zahir, the President’s Chief of Staff, Ahmed Khaleel, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, Sabra Ibrahim Noordeen, Secretary of Foreign Relations and Ibrahim Hood, Chief Communications Strategist at the President’s Office, during his trips to the two countries.
This was the president’s second trip abroad since the Maldives reopened borders in July 2020 after nearly four months since borders were closed due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.
President Solih first touched down in Qatar early Monday, where he engaged in fruitful discussions with the Emir of Qatar, Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad Al Thani at the Amiri Diwan, the Amir’s Administrative Office. The visit marks the celebration of the re-establishment of diplomatic relations between Maldives and Qatar
During the discussions the leaders shed light on the commitment to take the Maldives-Qatar relations to new heights from enhancing diplomatic engagements to increasing investments and development cooperation, the president said. Further, the impacts of the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic in their respective countries were also discussed. President Solih applauded the government of Qatar for the measures implemented to curb the spread of Covid-19.
Solih also announced his intention to appoint a non-resident Maldivian Ambassador to Qatar to further enhance bilateral relations.
The Maldivian delegation also joined the first couple at an official lunch hosted by the Qatari Emir. Further, First Lady Fazna also attended a private lunch hosted by the Emir’s spouse, Sheikha Jawaher Bint Hamad bin Suhaim Al Thani.
The first couple also toured the Museum of Islamic Art in Doha, which houses one of the most comprehensive Islamic art collections in the world.
On his two-day state visit to Bangladesh consecutively, the president attended the official ceremony to commemorate the ‘Birth Centenary of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman’, held at the National Parade Grounds, Dhaka, as the guest of honor upon the invitation of the Bangladeshi President, Md. Abdul Hamid
During the ceremony the president praised Sheikh Mujibur Rahman for the “heroic efforts” that were pivotal in securing an independent destiny for the Bangladeshi people.
Further, the first couple also visited the National Martyrs’ Memorial, a prominent national monument honoring those who sacrificed their lives during the Bangladesh Liberation War in 1971. Then, he visited the Bangabandhu Memorial Museum, previously the home of Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.
Bilateral talks with the Prime Minister of Bangladesh, Sheikh Hasina were also held during the president’s visit. The two leaders engaged in productive discussions on boosting the existing relations and extending cooperation through multiple sectors.
One of the most important highlights of the president’s state visit to Bangladesh was the signing of four key agreements aimed at reinforcing mutual cooperation to further enhance existing bilateral ties between the two nations.
The key agreements signed between Maldives and Bangladesh are:
- Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the Government of the Republic of Maldives and the Government of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh on the Establishment of the Maldives-Bangladesh Joint Commission on Comprehensive Cooperation.
- MoU between the Government of the Republic of Maldives and the Government of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh on the Establishment of Bilateral Consultations.
- MoU between the Ministry of Fisheries, Marine Resources and Agriculture of the Republic of Maldives and the Ministry of Fisheries and Livestock of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh, on the Establishment of the field of Fisheries and Pelagic Fishing.
- MoU between the Government of the Republic of Maldives and the Government of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh on the Establishment of Cultural Exchange Programme (CEP) for 2022-2025.
Prior to concluding the visit, the first couple attended an official banquet hosted by the Bangladeshi President, as his honored guests, at the Presidential Palace of Bangladesh on Thursday. A cultural show was presented during the banquet and President Solih also signed the Visitor’s Book at the Bangladeshi President’s Palace.