Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office written statement – made on 17th March 2023.
Since the Written Ministerial Statement made on 3 November 2022, the UK and Mauritius have held constructive negotiations on 23 to 24 November 2022, 11 to 12 January 2023 and 23 to 24 February 2023 on the exercise of sovereignty over the British Indian Ocean Territory (BIOT) / Chagos Archipelago. These discussions have built understanding between the two sides, and covered issues relating to ensuring the continued effective operation of the joint UK/US military base on Diego Garcia; resettlement of the former inhabitants of the Chagos Archipelago; strengthening our cooperation on a range of issues such as environmental and marine protection, improving security and tackling illegal activities in the region.
As agreed at the outset of negotiations, the UK and Mauritius have taken stock of negotiations and agreed next steps. The Prime Minister, my Rt Hon Friend the Member for Richmond (Yorks) and Prime Minister Jugnauth spoke on 14 February. The Prime Ministers welcomed the progress to date and agreed to continue negotiations, with a view to arriving at an agreement in the coming months.