The government of the Maldives, a place regularly voted the world’s top luxury destination, has banned public protests in a bid to suppress growing opposition to the autocratic rule of president Mohammed Waheed.

Male, the capital of the Maldives.

Male, the capital of the Maldives. Image by Timo Newton-Syms / CC BY-SA 2.0

Protests over the weekend were put down by riot police using tear gas, just the latest incident of violence on the streets of Male, the tiny and overcrowded capital of the Maldives. Most tourists head straight from the international airport to the Maldives’ many resort islands, but day trips to Male are a popular part of many itineraries. Since the former president, Mohamed Nasheed, was forced to resign following a military mutiny, there have been vocal protests against the government and figures linked to the opposition have been attacked and murdered by Islamist gangs. Read more: