I've heard of the Maldives and seen them on a map before. In fact, I've sailed within spitting distance (as far as an aircraft carrier's fighter/bombers are concerned). Yet I've never known that they rounded out the top five persecuting countries in the world.
The Maldives is a Muslim country, yet it's population is a scant 306,000 people. Of those 306 thousand, less than .1% is Christian, meaning that there might be as many as 306 Christians. Can you imagine walking into the city of Pittsburgh (roughly the same population) and only being able to find 300 Christians? And that number is mostly made up of expats. Of course that means that the number of ethnic Maldivians who are Christian is almost zero. One simply must be a Muslim to be a Maldivian.
As far as outright persecution goes, however, there is little. It is more of the situation where, due to an eliminated freedom of speech and a complete inability to meet together to even read scripture, Christians on the islands are unable to expand their influence. Furthermore, outside influinces are kept to a minimum, meaning Christian missionaries are almost non-existant.
Something in my heart believes that the issue must be pushed in the Maldives, if for no other reason than to find out what the government will do there. I pray, and invite you to do the same, for a laborer to go into that harvest to find out exactly what can be done and where the line in the sand really is.
To read more, go to Open Doors USA or The Voice of the Martyrs.