President delivers remarks at the 4th Indian Ocean Conference

His Excellency President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih has delivered the opening remarks at the 4th Indian Ocean Conference (IOC) this afternoon at Paradise Island Resort.

The President highlighted that the Indian Ocean Region (IOR) has in recent times truly come into the forefront of global politics, due to the prolific amount of commercial, cultural and political activity taking place therein. The President expressed that the Maldives is located at the heart of this important region, understands well the need to find common ground and effectively organize in order to meet the mutual challenges confronted by countries across the region.

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Elaborating on these sentiments the President noted particularly salient issues such as climate change, the proper implementation of maritime law as delineated in the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), and combatting illicit trafficking of humans and narcotics.

Further, he spoke with regard to the need for countries from across the region to come together to confront the threats of terrorism and violent extremism.

The President noted that in meeting these challenges, the countries of the IOR must enhance intra-regional cooperation through participating in and strengthening formal intergovernmental bodies devoted to that end, highlighting the Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA) in particular.

He also noted that the Maldives is highly appreciative that we have become a party to IORA and expressed that his administration is eager to contribute to this body once our membership is formalized at the next IORA Council of Ministers (COM) meeting, which is to be held in October.

With regard to the ongoing conference, the President expressed his optimism that it will prove to be a fruitful one, especially in light of the distinguished body who have come to participate, whose collective sagacity will prove more than equal to the task of formulating novel solutions to the challenges the region confronts.

The 4th edition of Indian Ocean Conference (IOC) is organized by India Foundation in association with Government of the Maldives and S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies, Singapore. The theme of IOC 2019 is ‘Securing the Indian Ocean Region: Traditional and Non-Traditional Challenges’. The conference will take place between the 3rd and 4th September and will be chaired by Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe. Several international dignitaries including the Foreign Secretary of India and the Singaporean Foreign Minister as well Maldives’ Foreign Minister Abdulla Shahid are in attendance to the conference

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