// Coup d 'etat in the Maldives
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lala marcy
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« on: Feb 09, 2012 06:49 PM »

I've always wanted to go to this place...hmm, not so sure whats going on right now though. The READER COMMENTS are most interesting. Some say he( the now disposed leader/PResident) was not all that great and others praise him greatly. Who knows.


I first heard about Mohamed Nasheed in 2008, when, immediately after taking office as the first-ever democratically elected leader of the Maldives, he decided not just to repair his country’s broken economy and nurture its fragile democracy but also to take up the formidable battle against climate change.

A forum for short, opinionated documentaries, produced with creative latitude by independent filmmakers and artists.

After he was inaugurated, Mr. Nasheed declared that the Maldives was looking for a new homeland for its doomed population, and he later pledged that the country would be the first to become carbon neutral. A former journalist and longtime human rights activist, he viewed the struggle against climate change itself as a fight for human rights.

He had been imprisoned and tortured under the regime of the Maldives’s longtime dictator, Maumoon Abdul Gayoom, spending months in solitary confinement. Mr. Nasheed went into exile in 2003, and his return and subsequent election as president was nothing short of a miracle.

In 2009, I traveled to the Maldives to pitch Mr. Nasheed on my idea for a documentary film that would cover his dual challenges of despotism and global warming and culminate in Copenhagen in December 2009, where world leaders were to gather for a United Nations meeting about climate change.

I realized I was asking for a lot: free rein to film cabinet meetings, intimate family meals and tense bilateral exchanges with world leaders. But Mr. Nasheed thought for only a moment before saying: “Yes. Let’s do it.” Throughout our one and a half years of filming, my team was struck by his candor, tirelessness, humanity and deep commitment to transparency.

On Tuesday, we were stunned to learn that Mr. Nasheed was forced to resign his presidency under duress. Mr. Gayoom’s supporters had taken violently to the streets and put Mr. Nasheed in an impossible position: attack your own countrymen or resign. He once again followed his conscience and stepped down.

This Op-Doc includes excerpts from our feature documentary about him, “The Island President.”

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