Protests over anti-Islamic movie spread to the Maldives

Crowds of protesters gathered in front of the UN building on Friday, protesting against the movie “Innocence of Muslims”, perceived as offensive to the Prophet Mohamed.

Similar protests have erupted across the Arab world following the release of video offensive to Muslims on the the video-sharing website, YouTube. The UK’s Guardian newspaper reported that the video was promoted by radical Islamophobic Christians in the US and then broadcast in Egypt by Islamic activists.

Protests have occurred in Iraq, Iran, Bahrain, Afghanistan, Yemen, Egypt, Jerusalem and the West Bank, Kashmir, Malaysia, Indonesia and the Nigerian city of Jos. The most serious incident was in Libya, where demonstrators killed US Ambassador Chris Stevens and three embassy employees by firing a rocket-propelled grenade at their car. British and German embassies have also been attacked.

On Friday in Male’, a leaflet was distributed inviting persons to the protest at 4:00pm, titled “In Protection of Prophet Mohamed”. The leaflet did not specify who the organisers of the protest were.

Police had cordoned off the area ahead of the time, and protesters initially gathered opposite Billabong International School. Placards were mostly in English, and had a range of messages expressing their anger against the movie and the US in general.

Some of the placards in the front row read: “Behead those who insult our Prophet”, “Our prophet is dearest to us than our mother”, “May Allah curse America”, and “Maldives: Future graveyard of Americans and Jews”.

In less than an hour protesters broke through police barricades, shoving police away angrily and approached the UN headquarters. The few police officers present cleared the entrance of the building, but let protesters remain right in front of it.

Female protesters remained at the far end of the road, near the Billabong school.

A US flag was set on fire, with protesters surrounding it chanting “Allah Akbar”. A number of speeches were made, accompanied with chants. Some of the most repeated chants include asking President Waheed to return America’s US$20,000 contribution to restore the historical Buddhist artifacts in the museum, which were destroyed by a mob of vandals during February’s political turmoil. Some protesters stated loudly that if the idols were restored, they would promptly destroy them again.

At one point, protesters demanded the resignation of Minister of Islamic Affairs, Sheikh Mohamed Shaheem Ali Saeed.

A lecturer at the Maldives University, Sheikh Mohamed Thoyyib, was given protection by the police after his speech asking protesters to show patience and compassion like the Prophet enraged some of the people gathered there.

Young children accompanied some of the protesters, with some children and their parents holding toy guns in their hands.

The protest was adjourned in time for maghrib prayers, at around 6:30pm.

The Ministry of Islamic Affairs released a statement on Thursday condemning the movie. It stated that the enemies of Islam had always used tools of the times to insult the Prophet, but that such efforts would not at all harm the character of the Prophet, as he was held in high regard all over the world. The statement called on people to show restraint and to offer prayers for the Prophet.

The Islamic Foundation of the Maldives also issued a press release today, stating that “Countless numbers of Muslims all around the world intensely revere the person of Mohamed, in fact they revere him more than their own lives, and therefore it is extremely offensive for them to defame Prophet Mohamed (PBUH).”

The Maldives’ Ministry of Foreign Affairs has meanwhile officially condemned the attacks on the US Embassy in Cairo and the US Consulate in Benghazi.

In a series of Tweets last night, the Maldives’ Islamic Adhaalath Party (AP) condemned the video, whilst urging Muslims not to resort to violence.

“AP strongly condemns the anti Islamic video ‘Innocence of Muslims’ which is highly provocative and highly insulting to Muslims,” said the party, before adding, “Islam forbids resorting to violence against innocents. We should not attack our foreign guests and/or foreign diplomatic offices.”

The protests come at the end of a week that has seen two visits from to the Maldives from both the US Ambassador to Sri Lanka, Michele J. Sison, and US Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asian Affairs Robert Blake.

Local media reported that threats were made against Sison during the protest.

There were also reports that the crowd had issued warnings against Commonwealth Special Envoy Sir Donald McKinnon who also visited the country this week to discuss the recently completed Commission of National Inquiry (CNI) with leading politicians.


58 thoughts on “Protests over anti-Islamic movie spread to the Maldives”

  1. 4:132 - To GOD belongs everything in the heavens and the earth, and GOD is the only Protector.

    3:144 - Muhammad was no more than a messenger like the messengers before him. Should he die or get killed, would you turn back on your heels? Anyone who turns back on his heels, does not hurt GOD in the least. GOD rewards those who are appreciative.

    3:176 - Do not be saddened by those who hasten to disbelieve. They never hurt GOD in the least. Instead, GOD has willed that they will have no share in the Hereafter. They have incurred a terrible retribution.

    Prophet Mohamed has already died. So obviously no one can harm him. If a Messenger of God needs protection, it will be granted from God. No one has to create violence to protect Him. God is fully capable of protecting His creations. So is He capable of protecting his Religion and Himself. They are disbelievers, they have no knowledge, should we believers who has knowledge react in such a heinous way when the disbelievers just express their opinions. God also encourages freedom of religion, and freedom of expression is also not stopped or prohibited. Let others also live their lives and you can also bother with your own life.

  2. So an Egyptian makes a negative film about Islam and the Muslim world starts screaming death to America...Yeah I guess that makes sense.
    Muslims make horrible movies about Jews and Christians and think nothing of it, but when someone mocks their beliefs the radicals go insane...Once again that makes a lot of sense.
    Here's an idea respect other people's beliefs. And if someone does make a video do a little research.

  3. Catholicism – Hitting the dead pope with a hammer: I first heard this strange tradition during my time at Catholic school. As a freshman, Pope John Paul II passed away and Catholics were on the hunt. My religion teacher actually told me that the dead pope is hit in the head 3 times with a silver hammer to confirm whether or not he is dead. And I’m not joking. However, I didn’t find a whole lot of information about this ritual other than a mention in Wikipedia and an article on Snopes. Whether or not this is true or actually still performed, it’s odd.

    Mormonism – Temple underwear/garments: Yeah I know, ragging on Mormonism has become pretty popular these days especially with the introduction of a musical poking fun at the religion, thanks to the creators of South Park. However, their religious underwear is definitely freaky. Members are required to wear these undergarments at Temple even though they aren’t seen. The men’s version looks like a t-shirt and long shorts with a space for your junk. The female version looks like baggy diapers. Not cute.

    Church of Satan – Satanic Sins: To be honest, you wouldn’t think that the Church of Satan would have a set of rules or sins, but they do. They range from stupidity to “lack of aesthetics.” My favorite, though, is “herd conformity.” I understand trying to be an individual, but they sound like whiny goth kids. In their attempt to not conform with what is “normal,” they conform in their own group.

    Shamanism – Getting high for your beliefs: In the Shaman religion, people get high to enter the spirit world. There are probably some college frat boys or Californians who think that it’s awesome, but it’s definitely weird. Most people do drugs as an escape from their normal life, but not necessarily to enter a more spiritual state.

    Mormonism – Baptisms for the dead: Yep, another Mormon one. In honor of those who have died and didn’t learn about God, Mormons will take in a massive baptism for them. On the one hand, its an interesting ritual with good intentions. But, why not just let the dead rest in peace? Maybe they didn’t want to learn about God or they were happier without it.

    Judaism – Kapparot: On the eve of Yom Kipuur, some Jews practice in a very strange tradition. Basically, you shake a chicken around you while you pray to transfer your sins onto the chicken. Then, the chicken is killed and fed to the poor. I’m not sure if hacking a chicken around will absolve you of all your sins, but in the end, it’s going to charity. Mazel Tov!

    Christian Science – Refusing contemporary medicine: Although its true that not all Christian Scientists refuse modern day medicine, for the most part, they do. They believe that through prayer, anyone can be healed. I can totally understand being hesitant of medicine, but there are times when it has gotten them in trouble. For example, the Twitchells. Their two and a half year old son died from pertitonitis, which could have been prevented with surgery. That’s taking it a bit too far.

    Jedi Church – The force isn’t fictional, it was just brought to public eye by fictional means: A religion based off a popular book and movie series… It must be fictional, right? Not according to its members! The force is “an energy field created by all living things. It surrounds us, penetrates us, and binds the galaxy together.” The bottom line: A religion “brought to light” by a very fictional story? I’ll pass.

    Judaism – Circumcision: Circumcision is a very accepted practice in today’s world, and I’m not saying it’s a bad thing. But isn’t there something strange that God wants to seal his covenant with the Jews by having them snip the tip? He could have just asked them to wear a bracelet or style their hair a certain way, but instead it involved genitalia. A bit strange, no?

    Scientology – Everything: Scientology is just downright weird. It was created by L. Ron Hubbard, a science fiction writer in Camden, New Jersey. Each member must go through an auditing with e-meters that test theten levels and state of mind. Also, if you didn’t know already, bad feelings are causing my disembodied alien souls. Even though famous people such as John Travolta and Kristie Alley have taken to the religion, the entire thing is strange.

    Islam - Contradictions. Based on a very old book people live by a set of ancient rules believing in a dead messenger - if he ever was. If a bunch of extremist islamists kill 3.000 people in a terrorist attack muslims state: they were extremists. "Not all of us are like that. You cannot blame all muslims". But if an EGYPTIAN living in America makes a stupid childish ridiculous movie and insult - insult - not kill - the now dead prophet muslims all over the world yell: "Dead over America" and kill innocent people and attach the German embassy... HOW STUPID IS THAT?

  4. who knew of the existence of this movie until muslims themselves, promoted in their own way.
    if you have a nickel of respect and trust in Mohamed (PBUH), please remain calm and be like Mohamed (PBUH). truth prevails and if the movies is giving a wrong information it is solely up to you to decide that.. burning flags and killing innocent people only proves your disbelief in what you so fervently protect.

  5. Can our counrty stop using US Dollars?????? If we cannot do that, don't boast much...

  6. @I thought this nonsense guy actually made somesense, but apparently he does not. he just read a few summarized stories about oddities in religion and gobbles the info. for eg it didn't occur to him there is more to 9/11 than the 3k dead. what about the tower that collapsed without any planes hitting it? just parrot muslims killed 3000 in 9/11 and be happy about your idiocy? that's very nonsensical to me

  7. @nonsense nice one ,i really enjoyed your parody of all religions but is it really yours or some source to it

  8. @Moosa rasheed
    you hardly make sense


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