On the 31st anniversary of Victory Day, we honour those who made the ultimate sacrifice for this nation. Today, the brave martyrs of the Maldives National Defence Force, and civilians are remembered with abundant love. We are grateful that such heroic people were amongst us. We honour all those who undertook the duties entrusted to them with unwavering dedication and dignity and fought to preserve the sovereignty of this nation.

It is a day to value true friends and partnerships. The invaluable military support of the Indian Government on 3rd November 1988 remains etched in our hearts. Our highest gratitude and deepest appreciation shall never diminish.

That fateful day showcased the special security threats and vulnerabilities faced by small States . That realisation made Maldives take up the issue at the United Nations – resulting in multiple resolutions on the security of small states and their vulnerability to external threats. The Maldives efforts in this regard, helped change the discourse on how small States are viewed and discussed in the international security debate.

To counter the emerging external threats of the twenty-first century, we have become even more aware of the need to build our national resilience, as well as invest in the ties that bind us to the larger international community. We shall, with resolute dedication, continue to work towards protecting our sovereignty and independence, through further engagement and enhanced cooperation with the our friends and partners.

May Allah (SWA) protect our nation, and our people. May peace reign in our beloved country.