Moosa Ali Jaleel

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Major General (Rtd.) Moosa Ali Jaleel
Maj. Gen. Moosa Ali Jaleel.jpg
Retired Maj. Gen Jaleel (then Brig. Gen) at the Pacific Armies Management Seminar in Fiji
Minister of Defence and National Security
In office
20 January 2015 – 14 October 2015
President Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom
Preceded by Colonel (Rtd.) Mohamed Nazim
Succeeded by Adam Shareef
Personal details
Born (1960-06-26) 26 June 1960 (age 56)
Alma mater Officer Cadet School, Singapore Armed Forces Training Institute
United States Army Infantry School, Fort Benning, Georgia, USA
Commando Training Centre Royal Marines, Lympstone, Devon, UK
Religion Islam
  • Medal for Exceptional Bravery
  • Distinguished Service Medal
  • Presidential Medal
  • 3rd November Medal
  • Defence Force Service Medal
  • Dedicated Service Medal
  • Good Conduct Medal
  • Centenary Medal
  • Long Service Medal
  • Purple Heart
Military service
Nickname(s) Jaleel / CO
Allegiance Maldives
Service/branch Maldives National Defence Force
Years of service 1980 - 2012
Rank Major General
  • Chief of Defence Force
  • Vice Chief of Defence Force
  • Director General - Coast Guard
  • Commanding Officer - Special Protection Group
  • Commanding Officer - Rapid Reaction Force
  • Commanding Officer - Quick Reaction Force I, II & III
  • Commanding Officer - Maldives National Cadet Corps
Battles/wars 1988 Maldives Coup

Major General (Retired) Moosa Ali Jaleel RM HRM, M.Phil. MSc ndc psc is the former Minister of Defence and National Security of the Republic of Maldives. He was the former Chief of Defence Force of the Maldives National Defence Force and most senior military officer in the country at his time.[1]


Major General Jaleel was born on 26 June 1960 in Malé, Maldives. He completed his secondary schooling at Majeediyya School.

He is frequently cited as the most highly trained and capable military officer in the country. People who are knowledgeable about the November 3rd 1988 incident and Major General Jaleel's bravery and dedicated action that day hold him in the highest regard and respect.[2][3]

He enjoys a tremendous amount of public as well as soldiers support and during his leadership, he enormously contributed to develop the human resources and infrastructure of MNDF and re-organize and restructure the MNDF as a mission oriented armed force. His experience in various MNDF Units as well as the broad knowledge and wide range of skills makes him a great asset to MNDF and the Maldives.

He has commanded all front line infantry units in the MNDF including the Rapid Reaction Force (RRF), Quick Reaction Force I, II & III (QRF 1, 2 & 3), Special Protection Group (SPG) and has also served as the Director General of Maldivian Coast Guard. He was the first Maldivian to initiate infantry oriented training in Maldives. He trained a large amount MNDF personnel and also served as the Commanding Officer of the Maldives National Cadet Corp.

Major General Moosa Ali Jaleel was appointed to the post of Chief of Defence Force on 18 November 2008 by the President HE Mohamed Nasheed.[4] He honorably retired from active service on 8 February 2012. On officially accepting his retirement, HE Dr. Mohamed Waheed Hassan Manik thanked the Chief of Defence Force for his dedicated service to the nation as an MNDF officer.

Military Career and Training[edit]

Maj. General Jaleel has the distinction of having been trained at various UK, US and Indian Military Institutes:

United States
United Kingdom

In addition, Maj. General Jaleel holds a Master of Philosophy, M.Phil. and a Master of Science Degree in Defence and Strategic Studies, M.Sc from the University of Madras India. He also attends the Pacific Armies Management Seminar (PAMS) organized by the United States Pacific Command.

Among his distinctions he's the first Maldivian to complete Officer Cadet training and the only Maldivian graduate of Singapore Armed Forces Officer Cadet School. The only Maldivian to undertake the UK Royal Marines All Arms Commando Course, as such he's entitled to wear the Commando badge of UK Royal Marines which is one of the world's most elite fighting forces. Furthermore, he's the first Maldivian to accomplish Defence College / War College studies, which is the highest level of military studies attainable.

Military Decorations[edit]

Maj. General Jaleel is one of the most highly decorated officers within the Maldives National Defence Force, with 10 Service Medals and 9 Service Ribbons for his exemplary leadership and distinguished service in the defence force.[5] Major General Moosa Ali Jaleel was awarded Purple Heart for being wounded in the field in the battle against the coup attempt on 3 November 1988 by mercenaries linked to a Sri Lankan terrorist group. Long Service Medal was awarded to Major General Jaleel in recognition of his 30 year of distinguished service to the Maldives military.

Service Medal decorations[6]
  • The Presidential Medal
  • The Defence Force Service Medal
  • The Distinguished Service Medal
  • The Good Conduct Medal
  • The Medal for Exceptional Bravery (Huravee Ran Medal)
  • The Dedicated Service Medal
  • The Purple Heart (Jihaadhuge Raiy Medal)
  • The Long Service Medal
  • The 3rd November Medal
  • The Centenary Medal
Service Ribbon decorations[6]
  • Presidential Ribbon
  • Defence Force Service Ribbon
  • Long Service Ribbon
  • Dedicated Service Ribbon
  • Special Duty Ribbon
  • Achievement Ribbon (Twice)
  • Good Conduct Ribbon (Twice)
Overseas decorations

3 November 1988 attack[edit]

Maj. General Jaleel played a pivotal role in organizing and leading the defence of the NSS HQ during the attack. His military training and knowledge proved to be most valuable to the commanders at the NSS HQ. He received a bullet/shrapnel injury to his leg early on while retaliating to the attacker at the North-East corner of the Bandaara Koshi where the fighting was most intense but even with this injury he continued performing throughout the incident remarkably.[2]

His bravery and dedication are most notable as the Commander of the Recce patrol. The Recce patrol was an effort to venture of the NSS HQ which was under siege to retaliate and gather knowledge of the attacker. The first attempt was made to leave the HQ in buses with a tractor leading the way, this effort was aborted after the gate could not be opened as it was jammed due to damage. The second attempt was made through the Defence Ministry gate (then Police HQ gate) on foot. 11 soldiers with task force training volunteered for this mission. After being organized and briefed on the mission by Maj. Gen Jaleel (then Lt.), the patrol was addressed by Maj. Gen (Ret.) Mohamed Zahir (then Major) who was the leading Commander at the NSS HQ at the time.[2]

The patrol formed up on the half wall fronting the street then with Maj. Gen Jaleel, the commander at the lead of the patrol, ran out through the gate and along Ameeru Ahmed magu towards Huravee Building. Due to reasons unknown only 9 member were able to run out the gate with 2 members remaining inside. As the attackers noticed the patrol running out of the HQ they intensified the fire towards them and additionally a member of the patrol slipped and was unable to use his weapon to return fire which resulted in 3 member of the patrol being killed under fire. The remaining 6 members completed their mission and returned inside the base through the same gate.[2]

The mission is undoubtedly the most daring in the modern military history of the country. The soldiers who volunteered for the mission undertook it with full knowledge that they were venturing out a HQ which was under siege and into the hail of bullets from the attackers. And Maj. Gen Jaleel holds a legendary status in the MNDF as the commander who led this mission.[2]

Minister of Defence and National Security[edit]

After the controversial dismiss of the then Defence Minister Colonel (Rtd.) Mohamed Nazim, Moosa Ali Jaleel was appointed as the Minister of Defence and National Security on 20 January 2015. Prior to the appointment of Defence Minister, Moosa Ali Jaleel was serving as the High Commissioner of the Maldives to Pakistan.


Maj. General Jaleel has 5 children, from previous marriages.


Preceded by
Adam Zahir
Vice Chief of Defence Force (Maldives)
Succeeded by
Farhath Shaheer
Preceded by
Mohamed Zahir
Chief of Defence Force (Maldives)
Succeeded by
Ahmed Shiyam
Preceded by
Mohamed Nazim
Minister of Defence and National Security (Maldives)
Succeeded by
Adam Shareef