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In the Seychelles, Modi boosts security cooperation

He is the first Indian PM to visit the island nation in 34 years

Prime Minister Narendra Modi clicks a picture during dedication of the India - Seychelles cooperation project 'Coastal Surveillance Radar System' in Mahe, Seychelles, on Wednesday.— PHOTO: PTI
Prime Minister Narendra Modi clicks a picture during dedication of the India - Seychelles cooperation project 'Coastal Surveillance Radar System' in Mahe, Seychelles, on Wednesday.— PHOTO: PTI
Terming Seychelles a “trusted friend and a strong strategic partner,” Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday wrapped up the first leg of his three-nation tour of the Indian Ocean countries with both nations underlining the need for comprehensive cooperation in the region. “Our security partnership is strong. It has enabled us to fulfil our shared responsibility to advance maritime security in the region,” Mr. Modi said. He is the first Indian Prime Minister to visit Seychelles in 34 years.
Highlighting India’s push for regional integration, Mr. Modi observed: “We also hope that Seychelles will soon be a full partner in the maritime security cooperation between India, Maldives and Sri Lanka.” During his meeting with Seychelles President James Alix Michel, Mr. Modi announced that India will give a second Dornier aircraft to the island nation for coastal surveillance and called it a “privilege to be a partner of Seychelles in the development of its security capabilities.”

The two nations signed four agreements for cooperation in hydrography, renewable energy, infrastructure development and hydro-graphic survey. Another important agreement pertains to infrastructure development in the Assumption Island.
“Our agreement today on hydrographic survey adds a new dimension to our maritime cooperation,” Mr. Modi said. Mr. Modi also inaugurated the first of the eight Coastal Surveillance Radar Systems being set up by India.
India is helping Indian Ocean littorals in strengthening their maritime domain awareness capabilities.
Stressing on economic and development cooperation, Mr. Modi said: “Indeed, Seychelles is one of the largest recipients of Indian assistance in this area. We intend to expand this further.”
At the next stop in Mauritius, Mr. Modi will be chief guest at that country’s Independence Day celebrations on March 12 and also commission MCGS Barracuda — an offshore patrol vessel — built by India.

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