- Leader: President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih
- Population: 376,000 (A few thousand Christians)
- Main Religion: Islam
- Country fact sheet
All citizens are expected to be Muslims and these close-knit homogeneous island communities act as natural watchdogs for any deviation from this.
Conversion can lead to being reported to Muslim leaders or authorities. Radical Islamic clerics exert strong control, making it impossible for converts to show their faith in any way. Migrant Christians (from India and Sri Lanka) are strictly monitored, too. Reportedly, most have ceased meeting, since it was drawing too much attention from the authorities.
Read more about persecution in Maldives
Persecution in Maldives
The government sees itself as the protector of Islam, and the judicial system increasingly reflects Sharia (Islamic law); the death penalty has been introduced as punishment for murder, even for children, and a law banning marital rape was vetoed by the president as 'un-Islamic'. Converting to another religion means losing your citizenship, and being found to own a Bible would result in a prison sentence.
While the state does recognise expatriate Christians, church gatherings and buildings are banned, so they are only able to meet in embassies in the capital. Even tourists have reported getting into trouble for having a personal copy of the Bible.
- Ask God to give people dreams and visions that will lead them to hear of His love
- For God’s healing and new birth in the lives of the large numbers of Maldivians who have been damaged by drug abuse.
How Open Doors helps
Open Doors is dedicated to supporting persecuted Christians in South East Asia through the following:
- Advocacy and awareness
- Prayer support.
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