The Maldives election in September 2023 went to a runoff, with Mohamed Muizzu of the Progressive Party winning the presidency. In the lead-up to the elections, the government used the problematic Freedom of Assembly Act to block protesters and opposition members from campaign rallies, and police used excessive force against journalists.

The Maldives still makes adult, consensual same-sex sexual conduct a criminal offense, which is punished by up to eight years’ imprisonment. Those who promote the rights of LGBT people, women, and other “secular” issues have been harassed, targeted, and threatened on social media by extremist Islamist groups.

The authorities do not adequately enforce the state’s environmental protection laws and prioritize development projects over the protection of local communities and the environment.

Maldives map