Maldives will buy Turkish drones.
The new government in Maldives has signed a USD 37-million deal with Turkey to buy military drones that will patrol its high seas – a task so far done by India in partnership with the Maldivian defence forces, theprint.in reports.
The decision comes in the backdrop of President Mohamed Muizzu’s 15 March deadline for 77 Indian military personnel to leave the island nation. Muizzu came to power last September, riding on an anti-India rhetoric and ‘India out’ campaign.
Maldivian media Adhadhu reported that the money for the Turkish drones has been allocated from the state’s contingency budget. Quoting government sources, it said the Finance Ministry has already released part of the payment to the MNDF.
It added that under the agreement signed by the Maldives government with a company which supplies drones to the Turkish military, the money will be paid in instalments. According to the agreement, the payment for the transaction must be done within this year.
The likely drone that Maldives plans to buy is reportedly Aksungur.
Turkey has been at the forefront of drone warfare and has emerged as one of the biggest exporters of drones, both armed and unarmed.