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Other than Saudi Arabia, the Maldives is the only nation that claims a 100-percent Muslim population. However, the Indian Ocean archipelago featuring 1,192 islets southwest of Sri Lanka has more than 70,000 expatriate workers representing several non-Islamic religions, including Christianity. Those who intermingle must exercise caution. "Even if you engage any Maldivian in a discussion on Christianity and the person reports it to authorities, you can be in trouble," said a source who requested anonymity. "A Maldivian youth studying in Sri Lanka became a Christian recently, but when his parents came to know about it, they took him away. We have not heard from him since then." The source added that such instances are not uncommon in the Maldives. Abdulla Yameen, brother of the former dictator of the Maldives and leader of an opposition party ally, said that on May 28 a 37-year-old Maldivian citizen, Mohamed Nazim, was attacked after he told a gathering that he was not a Muslim. Before a crowd of around 11,000 Maldivians, Mohamed told a visiting Indian Muslim televangelist, Zakir Naik, that although he was born to a practicing Muslim family, he was "struggling to believe in religions." When Mohamed asked Zakir about his "verdict on Islam," many called for Mohamed's death while others beat him. "See how the public went after his throat," said Abdulla, proud of their "passion" for Islam. Asked if such passion was good for a society, he replied, "Yes. We are an Islamic nation, and our religion is an important part of our collective identity." (Source: Compass Direct)

Please pray the Lord will break down the restrictions in this nation to share the Gospel. Pray He will raise up bold believers to make the most of every opportunity to share their faith. Pray for wisdom for of all believers as they serve Christ.

To find out more about the trials facing Christians in the Maldives, click here.

Country Information

Population
392,473 (July 2018 est.)

Ethnicity (%)
Sinhalese, Dravidian, Arab, Australasian, and African

Religion (%)
Sunni Muslim (official)

Leader
President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih

Government type
Presidential Republic

Legal system
Islamic religious legal system with English common law influences, primarily in commercial matters

Source: CIA World Factbook

Pray for Maldives

Pray for Maldivians who believe -- for their protection and courage in the face of great trials and for opportunities to grow in and spread their faith.

Pray that the religious freedom of Maldivian Christians will be recognized.

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Maldives News

  • Indian teacher arrested and deported for owning a Bible
    Parliament building in Male, capital of the Maldives.
    Photo: Compass Direct News

    Police in Maldives arrested and held Shijo Kokkattu, a 30-year-old teacher from India, for more than two weeks before deporting him earlier this month for keeping a Bible in his home, according to a foreign source in th

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  • Prospects of religious freedom appear grim

    Other than Saudi Arabia, the Maldives is the only nation that claims a 100-percent Muslim population. However, the Indian Ocean archipelago featuring 1,192 islets southwest of Sri Lanka has more than 70,000 expatriate workers representing several non-Islamic religions, including Christianity. Those

    ...