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* Sri Lanka, Maldives to sign agreements on a variety of issues
Tue, Jan 21, 2014, 09:39 pm SL Time, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

Jan 21, Colombo: Sri Lanka and Maldives will sign several Memoranda of Understanding on a variety of issues during the Maldivian President Abdulla Yameen's state visit to the island, Sri Lanka's External Affairs Ministry said.

Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Maldives Ms. Dunya Maumoon, who is part of President Yameen's delegation, met with her Sri Lankan counterpart, Prof. G. L. Peiris at the Ministry of External Affairs in Colombo on Tuesday.

Prof. Peiris, welcoming Ms. Maumoon on her first official visit to Sri Lanka as Foreign Minister, said that the recent political transition which took place in the Maldives indicated the maturity and foresight of all parties concerned, the Ministry said in a statement.

During the bilateral discussions the two ministers agreed on the need to intensify discussions within the already established mechanisms for structured bilateral dialogue.

They expressed satisfaction that Memoranda of Understanding on a variety of issues such as health, youth and skills development, sports, combating crime and police training would be signed between the two countries during President Yameen's visit to the island.

According to the Ministry, specific issues discussed were co-operation in education, food security, economic and trade relations, supply of fruit and vegetables to the Maldives through Mattala airport, employment and collaboration in the defence and fisheries sectors.

Before his departure to Sri Lanka, President Yameen told reporters that the agreements would be focused on improving the health sector and police service.

Prof. Peiris comprehensively updated the Maldivian minister on current political and economic developments in Sri Lanka.

The Ministers have agreed that the vital interests of both countries would be served by the closest co-operation between them.

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