WindoWatchman: The Maldives
Political Leader: President Abdulla Yameen
Christians: 0.1 per cent
Persecution Ranking: 7
The Maldives is a nation of 1,200 islands in the Indian Ocean around 435 miles southwest of Sri Lanka. It is full of natural beauty. Click here to see a two-minute video.
While this beauty draws tourists, the Maldives is a strict Islamic country which claims to have a 100 per cent Muslim population. It is the only country in the world which requires all citizens to be Muslim. Citizens are controlled to keep them from straying from the Islamic way.
The country officially declared itself an Islamic state in 1997. It wants mosques built on every inhabited island. The capital, Male, currently has over 30 mosques, of which the most outstanding is the Islamic Center with its golden dome.
The Maldives works closely with Saudi Arabia in the field of Islamic affairs. Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Salman announced in February 2014 that he would build 10 "world-class" mosques in the Maldives. He also donated 1 million USD to the Maldivian Ministry of Islamic Affairs, as well as 1.5 million USD for health projects.
The very few local Christians have no freedom at all and are "victims of every kind of persecution." They are forced to remain secret. Bringing Scriptures and Christian literature into the country is forbidden. There are no known church gatherings or buildings in the Maldives.
Pray that tourists and the tourist industry (which often brings in a sizeable amount of the country's GDP) will put pressure on the governments to allow freedom of religion (The Bible, Amos 5:24).
Pray that the faith of the few Christians and their relationship with God would be strong and the Lord will use them to preach the Gospel to the precious people of the Maldives (The Bible, Acts 14:22).
Pray for the stronghold of Islam over the Maldives to be broken (The Bible, 2 Corinthians 10:4).
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