Minister of Foreign Affairs, His Excellency Abdulla Shahid met with the members of the Commonwealth Second Assessment Mission yesterday at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
The Assessment Mission is presently visiting the Maldives to engage with important domestic stakeholders to assess the Maldives’ application to rejoin the Commonwealth.
During the meeting, Minister Shahid reiterated the commitment of the Maldives to promote and uphold the ideals of the Commonwealth, including in the promotion of democratic norms and good governance in the country, as well as in strengthening accountability, human rights and transparency.
Minister Shahid stated that since the new Government came into office on November 2018, all efforts have been undertaken to ensure that the Maldives is able to rejoin the Commonwealth at the earliest possible opportunity, including through a fast track process. He expressed hope that the Assessment Mission would make positive recommendations to the Secretary-General in favor of the Maldives’ interest in rejoining the 53-country organization.
Following the formal request made to the Commonwealth by President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih in December 2018, the Commonwealth first conducted an assessment visit to the Maldives in January 2019, followed by an elections observer mission in April 2019. Minister Shahid had also met with the Secretary-General of the Commonwealth most recently in June 2019, when the Maldives submitted the required documents requested by the Commonwealth Secretariat as part of the due process under the Kampala Communique.
The Commonwealth team recollected the enthusiasm and the commitment during their meetings with the various stakeholders in the Maldives and reaffirmed that the Maldives was well on course to satisfy the required due process and to rejoin the organization.
The Commonwealth Second Assessment Mission was represented at the meeting by Ms. Katalina Saplou, Senior Director, Governance and Peace Directorate of the Commonwealth Secretariat, Dr. Anne Gallagher, Director-General, Commonwealth Foundation, Mr. Sujeevan Perera, Advisor for Trade Competitiveness, Trade, Oceans and Natural Resources Directorate of the Commonwealth Secretariat, and by Mr. Jonathan Cheng, Political Officer for Asia/Europe of the Secretariat.
His Excellency Ahmed Khaleel, the Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, His Excellency Dr. Asim Ahmed, Ambassador-at-large at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Javed Faizal, Additional Secretary at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and Ahmed Salman Zaki, Assistant Director participated in the meeting.
The Commonwealth Assessment Mission is visiting the Maldives from 25 August to 29 August, and have met with a number of domestic and diplomatic stakeholders as part of their assessment into the Maldives’ application to rejoin the Commonwealth.