Protesters attack India Embassy during Yoga event in Maldives

Police in the Maldives had used tear gas and pepper spray to control a crowd of people who disrupted a yoga event organised by the Indian High Commission, or embassy, in the capital Male on Tuesday morning, an organiser said.


The crowd stormed a stadium where more than 150 people, including diplomats and government officers, were participating in an event celebrating International Day of Yoga, attacking participants and vandalising the property, one of the organisers, who did not want to be named because he was not authorised to speak with the media.


The protesters earlier brandished placards proclaiming that yoga was against the tenets of Islam.


Islam is the state religion in the Maldives, a group of islands in the Indian Ocean with a population of about half a million.


Police responded with anti-riot measures and later on even used pepper spray and tear gas to control the crowd and secure the area, Superintendent of Police Fathmath Nashwa told Reuters.