India and Maldives signed a treaty on mutual legal assistance in criminal matters on October 2019 as Minister of External Affairs S Jaishankar and his Maldivian counterpart Abdulla Shahid addressed existing collaboration in different areas and ways to further improve bilateral ties. Jaishankar, who attends the 4th Indian Ocean Conference (IOC) in the Maldives, met Shahid at the Paradise Island Resort. This is his first nation trip since he took office in May.
For criminal matters, the two parties concluded the Mutual Legal Assistance Protocol. The protocol aims to improve the countries ' efficiency in investigating and prosecuting crime through cooperation and mutual legal assistance in criminal matters.
In the light of transcontinental crime and its links to terrorism, the agreement will provide a specific legal framework for bilateral cooperation with Maldives in combating and prosecuting crime, as well as in monitoring, curbing and confiscating profits and illegal tools, as well as funds intended to finance terrorist acts. An MLAT is a pact between countries to collect and exchange information to enforce public or criminal law. Jaishankar will also call on President Solih and the Speaker of Parliament Mohamed Nasheed.
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