The Indian Navy has provided the Maldives National Defense Force (MNDF) with two Dornier aircraft which would be operated by Maldives National Defense Force (MNDF).
A statement release by the Indian Embassy in the Maldives has stated that aircraft was a part of an intergovernmental agreement. The statement also stated that former administrations of the Maldives has also requested for such an aircraft for the purpose of enchanting security with a joint EEZ surveillance and HADR systems.
The Indian government noted that such request for surveillance aircraft was requested during former President Abdulla Yameen visit to India in 2016. Its has been reported that the aircraft would be stationed at the northern MNDF base of Hanimaadhoo and they would operate on the command of MNDF. The government has noted that the Indian Government would be bearing the operating cost of the aircraft.
According to MNDF the aircraft would be used for Search and Rescue operations as well as Maritime/EEZ surveillance and Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief for Maldivians in the north. Furthermore, the aircraft would be also used for EEZ surveillance activities by India and the Maldives.
The government has also noted that they will use to observe vessels enter Maldivian waters illegally and also to stop drug trafficking. Indian government has previously had donated two helicopters to the Maldives which are operated by the Indian Military personnel.
In regards, to the following move by the government a lot of local’s have criticism from locals and a huge campaign “Indiaout” has been launched by the social media activist.