[ View the story "Maldives: Six months after the 'coup'" on Storify] Maldives: Six months after the 'coup' Can the Maldives work towards political reconciliation?
Storified by The Stream · Wed, Jul 18 2012 11:54:13
As part of a bid to increase tourism in the country, the Maldives launched a new social media campaign using the slogan, "the sunny side of life". The government put out videos like this one, and asked Maldivians to join in promoting their country.
Maldives The Sunny Side Of Life 1maldiveswtm
But anti-government activists used the opportunity to highlight allegations of police brutality related to protests that followed the country's transfer of power in February.
ThankU Coup Government of Maldives for #sunnySideOfLife event. We'll make sure to pass your acts of brutality to Twittersphere.Waddey
Maldives #SunnySideOfLife where the tourism dollar is coverted to tear gas n rubber bullets instead of health or education.Abdul Majid
#SunnySideOfLife: Ah Maldives! Those white sandy beaches where torture happened everyday for 30 years. Stopped for 3 and now its back. VISITAdduHaanee Azaduge
The government is facing major protests from citizens angry over what they see as a coup. Until November 2008, the country was ruled for 30 years by the dictatorship of Maumoon Abdul Gayoom. Years of protests led to a democratic government, in which pro-democracy activist Mohamed Nasheed became president. But economic issues, ideological clashes with religious conservatives, and Nasheed's order to have the military
arrest a senior judge
spurred protests that turned into what some call a coup.
Nasheed resigned on February 7 and then-Vice President Mohamed Waheed has since taken power. The country's Commission of National Inquiry is in the process of investigating the transfer of power.
Earlier this year,
the coup allowed for Islamists to gain power in the country. He said that they are gaining greater influence, and could cause radicalisation. Islam is the official religion of the Maldives.
#Maldives government says its citizens may practice religions other than #Islam "freely - in private."CCPR Centre
Supporters of Nasheed and his Maldivian Democratic Party have been organising protests against the current government, calling for early elections. Protesters accuse the police of using harsh measures, including tear gas and rubber bullets, to control the crowds.
Police were shouting “face us face us, we will hunt you down”This is the police that protects and serve!sharaff
Police and protesters clash at Chaandhanee Magu junctionhaveeruvideos
Clashes at MDP Usfasgandu protesthaveeruvideos
Allegations of police brutality include an assault on the former president. In this video, Nasheed was allegedly pepper sprayed by police during a protest at the capital.
President Nasheed pepper sprayedhaveeruvideos
Maldivians, however, are not unanimously in support of protests or Nasheed.
@AJStream , Nasheed violated the constitution by dead bolting Supreme Court during his regime! Where was the democracy he advocated?Asima Latheef
@AJStream @MohamedNasheed publicly said he would favour his supporters and discriminate citizen with other political affiliations #askhimBuggy Husain
@AJStream please ask Ex-prez of Maldives Mr. Nasheed why he is keep saying different things abt his resignation & purpose of it #MaldivesShiham Waheed
@AJStream Nasheed, in power u betrayed #MDPs advocacy! Why should #Maldivians believe that u will walk the talk in a remote 2nd chance?Abdulla Mausoom
@AJStream @MohamedNasheed why did you distribute the country's wealth to your friends and families as if it was yours?Mawd
This week, the government formally filed charges against Nasheed for ordering the arrest of the Chief Justice of the Criminal Court. Brigadier General Ibrihim Mohamed Didi and Ali Hussain Didi, the country's ambassador to the European Union, both
from the Waheed government. These aren't the first high level resignations from Maldivian officials. Soon after Nasheed's resignation, the Maldivian ambassador to the United Nations, announced his resignation live on The Stream.
Maldives Ambassador to the UN resigns on Al Jazeera's The Streamajstream