Choose your officiant carefully if you’re getting spliced in the Maldives

A WESTERN couple visiting the Maldives were unwittingly subjected to a torrent of Islamic insults when they exchanged wedding vows at a luxury resort.


The English-speaking couple thought that the man conducting their marriage at the Vilu Reef Beach and Spa resort was blessing them during a Muslim ceremony, but what he was really doing in a language they did not understand was to call them “infidel” and “swine”, and declared that their marriage was “illegal”.

The resort’s website invites couples to:

Celebrate and capture the special moments of your life the Vilu Reef way… whether you have just vowed to love each other till eternity, mark a milestone in your amazing journey together or wish to rejoice another year of life.

According to this report, the abuse came to light when a video of the service was posted on YouTube, which shows an employee named Hussein Didi conducting the service. He tells the couple in his native Dhivehi tongue:

You are swine. The children that you bear from this marriage will all be bastard swine. Your marriage is not a valid one. You are not the kind of people who can have a valid marriage. One of you is an infidel. The other, too, is an infidel – and we have reason to believe – an atheist, who does not even believe in an infidel religion.

The document he uses, of which there is a brief close-up in the video, has absolutely no relation to marriage laws in the Maldives. Words that are legible on the document refer to “staff employment”, suggesting that it is a document relating to employment regulations.

Asking the couple and other “officials” to raise their hands as is customary for Muslim prayers, the “celebrant” chants, in a tone favoured by religious scholars:

Fornication has been legalised according to Article six, 1.11 of the Penal Code. That is, frequent fornication by homosexuals. Most fornication is by males.

The hapless couple remain oblivious as the “celebrant”, surrounded by 10-15 employees, calls for the marriage to be enshrined in Islamic law, followed by further personal insults against the couple, some relating to the woman’s breasts, others to the man’s dick:

Worms will come from the tip  of your penis.

The word “motherfuckers” is also applied to the couple.

None of the employees attempts to stop the “ceremony” and several take photographs.

Hat tip: BarrieJohn

32 responses to “Choose your officiant carefully if you’re getting spliced in the Maldives”

  1. Broga says:

    Charming. I suppose the happy couple kicked in with a financial contribution after being ridiculed. Mind you, if you want a blessing what can you expect. Very clearly a religious based abuse.

  2. Harry says:

    So getting married in a language you don’t speak joins getting a tattoo in a language you don’t speak as just asking for trouble.

  3. tony e says:

    I may have sent this already, but why are the ‘moderate’ muslims that we are told exist, not complaining about this lack of ‘respect’ towards others?

    Cue the sound of silence.

  4. JohnMWhite says:

    To be fair, tony e, how many Muslims do you think are on this site (or many of the sites you frequent)? I think it is very harsh to say that because there hasn’t been a torrent of Muslim commenters denouncing the kind of abuse shown in this story that just appeared this morning that means there are no moderate Muslims.

    This seems more a case of an angry celebrant using insults drawn from their religion than a case of a religion inspiring hatred itself – though it’s a fair bet that being steeped in the atmosphere of a hardcore Abrahamic faith has made the employee so damn mad to begin with.

  5. Neuseline says:

    The ITN news report states that the couple was renewing marriage vows, not getting married for the first time. Still, bad enough.

  6. chick-a-boom says:

    Can anyone here speak enough Arabic to confirm the translation?

  7. Anonymous says:

    Here you go, tony e. This response, in the comments, was heartening.‘wedding-ceremony’-in-dhivehi-degrades-tourist-couple-as-infidel-swine-mocks-islam-12671

    The Maldives have not had a good history with atheists – maybe some change will start to come. The reaction over this incident has been prompt.

    “Maldivian High Commissioner to UK, Dr Farahanaz Faisal: “The whole country is shocked”
    The Maldives’ leader has promised strict new guidelines on conducting wedding ceremonies for tourists, after a couple renewing vows were abused.

    All tourist hotels will be required to follow the rules to be issued shortly, President Mohamed Nasheed said in his weekly radio address.

    He described the behaviour of those involved as “absolutely disgraceful”.

    Police have detained a celebrant who called the foreign couple “infidels” during a luxury ceremony.”

    If they can only treat their own atheists with as much protection as the tourists, I will feel better.

  8. tony e says:


    I have to disagree, despite what the MCofB may say, there are no moderate muslims, the more we try to accommodate the more they take the proverbial piss. Multiculturalism, whilst a great idea, has failed.

    Whilst they may not comment regularly you can bet that this site is read by all religious nutters, not just muslims. In fact it would be heartening if one did come on this site to attack his fellow muslims when they cross the line. I not yet seen one.

  9. Sarah says:


    I speak Arabic, but the people conducting the ceremony aren’t speaking that.

  10. barriejohn says:

    He was using his native language, but there seems no dispute regarding the accuracy of the translation.

  11. Peter Hearty says:

    Imagine the feelings of any poor couple flying out to their honeymoon in the Maldives this weekend and reading about this disgusting behaviour before they go. Worse still, imagine if they’ve booked at that very same hotel.

    I’d find it very difficult not to be suspicious about everything the staff at the resort do or say.

  12. barriejohn says:

    I’m sure that there are a great many Muslims who are quite shocked by this, but, equally, there are many more who will be gloating! I have read comments saying that the couple got what was coming to them, and, whilst the commenters and those involved here may be demonstrating anti-Western feeling more than anything (much like the antipathy of our predecessors “in service” towards their employers), one cannot overlook the religious nature of the insults. Those of you who have never had close relationships with members of Christian sects in this country might well be shocked at the way that THEY regard “unbelievers”. Those “lovely” Christians, who smile so nicely, and show such keen interest in the welfare of you and your family, may be saying the most unpleasant things about you in private – only surpassed, of course, by the tongue-lashings reserved for those who, whilst believers, disagree with them on minutiae of doctrine. Religion fucks up your mind!

  13. Don says:

    I meant the comment by Free maldives NOW on Fri, 29th Oct 2010 12:34 PM

  14. JohnMWhite says:

    @tony e: 20 minutes before you continued your prejudiced diatribe, someone posted links proving your point wrong. Why did you even bother?

    I don’t really care what the Muslim Council of Britain says, I care that I have met Muslims who don’t want to kill me or oppress women or blow stuff up or rape children. Why they continue to identify with a faith that they don’t fully adhere to, I’m not sure, though I imagine a sense of cultural belonging and fear of the unknown play a large part. Rationalisation of one’s faith isn’t exclusive to them. However, they’re still Muslim, and by definition, moderate ones. Just as you’ll find plenty of Catholics who don’t think abortion is murder or condoms are… well, potential murder or something. People can belong to a faith without adhering to the worst of it, as intellectually dishonest as that may be.

    To say that multiculturalism has failed rather misses a large part of why we have so many atheists running around in the first place. Frothing at the mouth over Muslims is not the way to advance a secular agenda. Nor is bending to threats from extremists who want to kill cartoonists. Moderation, which does exist in all strands of faith and non-faith, is what builds understanding and cooperation.

    “Religion fucks up your mind!”

    Quite true. While I firmly believe there are plenty of harmless, moderate Muslims, any ideology backed up by god has potential to turn nasty, and I’d certainly rather our society threw off the burden of these celestial penis-measuring contests.

  15. tony e says:


    I’m afraid I cannot agree, but don’t be a lazy Guardian reader and call me prejudiced just because my views differ, I’m against ALL religions without favour.

    When drawing your line in the sand, just look over your shoulder and make sure there is enough room to retreat.

  16. William Harwood says:

    Moslems are mindphuqt from birth to believe that the Koran is an infallible command from a sky Fuhrer who must be obeyed. And the Koran is the most obscene paean to evil ever written (equal to the bible in that respect), demanding that non-Moslems are to be murdered on sight. (What part of, “When you encounter the unbelievers, strike off their heads”, do the apologists not understand?) The reason the overwhelming majority of Moslems are decent people and not terrorists, as they would be if they ever read a Koran, is that they have NOT ever read a Koran.
    I interpret the demand for moderate Moslems to denounce the perpetrators of atrocities as referring to the absence of such condemnations in the mass media, not their absence from this site. The number of Moslems who have denounced Osama bin Laden can be counted on the fingers of one finger.

  17. William Harwood says:

    Correction: Change “The number of Moslems who have denounced …” to “The number of high-ranking Moslems who have publicly denounced…”

  18. Don says:

    Well, this took about 3 seconds on Google. Admittedly it includes some dodgy characters, including Harun Yahya, but to claim that there has been no condemnation by mainstream leaders is just untrue.

  19. Daz says:

    Of course, to get their condemnations into the mass media, they’d somehow have to bypass the editing desks of organisations who want to portray the world in a black & white, good & bad, Us versus Them duality. Muslims-bad Christians-good is the childishly simple world picture most media want to show at the moment. Anyone complicating that worldview just isn’t going to get a voice. Case in point, don’t we all remember the pitiful coverage of protests against Ratzinger’s visit? Atheists, like moderate muslims, create a grey area that the simple-minded press don’t like to report, so, as far as possible, they ignore it.

    tony e: You start off by saying “there are no moderate muslims,” after ignoring evidence to the contrary, so yes, ‘prejudiced’ would be a fair description of your actions. I too am against all religion in principle, but if moderate believers want to believe in private that’s fine by me. Let’s save the ire for the nutjobs and fundamentalists who deserve it.

  20. William Harwood says:

    I have to agree that what gets into the media is dependent on the media’s prejudices. And saying that virtually no mullahs denounced atrocities was perhaps hyperbole.

  21. tony e says:


    Last week Bin Laden approved of violence against France as they had banned the burka. This would have been an ideal opportunity for the moderate muslims to speak out, but the silence has been deafening.

    They should be the first to publicly speak out at the violence carried out in their name.

    You may feel that I am prejudiced when it comes to religion, you may be correct, but I’d never justify violence to another person due to my (lack of) belief. Disliking a belief system and killing in it’s name are two very different things.

  22. Daz says:

    tony: Given my idea about the lack of interest shown by our oh-so-noble press in showing a balanced view, as I discussed earlier, where should these people be speaking out?

    To name one case that I am aware of the details of, do you remember all that fuss about muslim extremists wanting to protest at soldiers’ funerals? There was widespread condemnation by the British muslim community at that, yet it failed dismally to make it into any press reports. I found out about it via a half-hour late-night documentary about faith in this country, where these people were given a voice. The rest of the documentary was the usual dribble about the victimisation of the faithful, but that one point did shine out as a small piece of honest reporting. I have no reason to believe that the mainstream press have become any more open to balanced reporting since then.

  23. tony e says:


    I completely agree with your last post, the media in this country is, at best, a joke.

    However, if the muslim community wish to be seen as intergrated they need to be more vocal. No turning a blind eye or deaf ear. There are many muslims in pulic life, they should be speaking out on behalf of their communities ref fundamentalist muslims.

    That’s the crux of my whole moan, the moderates have to stand up and be counted.

  24. David Anderson says:

    Isn´t the reason that so few Muslims speak out, fear? When I lived in London I worked with many Muslims who were sick and tired of the atrocities carried out in the name of Islam. Although they would freely discuss this with me they would not, could not , do so in their local mosque for fear of repercussions from the “faithful”. How much more difficult is it then, for more prominent Muslims when you consider how many of them are in hiding for doing just that.
    The problem is (as Salmon Rushdie said) religion.

  25. RLR says:

    Makes me wonder once again why ANYONE in their right mind would go vacationing in Maldives. Are they just completely unaware of current events, or totally clueless Islamic-enabling leftists? I hope this, and that whole “everyone in Maldives must be Muslim or die” thing will scare off tourists.

    Look at Maldives on a map. It’s clearly sinking into the ocean. If I weren’t an atheist I’d say that was God’s will…

  26. rog says:

    “You are swine. The children that you bear from this marriage will all be bastard swine. Your marriage is not a valid one. You are not the kind of people who can have a valid marriage. One of you is an infidel. The other, too, is an infidel – and we have reason to believe – an atheist, who does not even believe in an infidel religion.”

    I’d have thought that would have been funny if it were in English, if me and the other half ever get married there I’ll ask for that bloke, though only if he’d ramp it up a bit – it seems a bit like a comedy roast. Then again it’s late and I’ve just had my second 13 hour day at a beer festival….

  27. Garlic says:

    David: Salman Rushdie. There’s something fishy about your spelling there, mate!

    The link to a Maldives website posted reveals that this has been going on for a while and some employees drew it to the attention of the resort’s boss, but he did nothing. Inaction about this is complicity. So many of the posts seem to relate to this boss’s use of Islamic law to keep divorcing and marrying new women, including shagging a mum and her daughter. Who knows the truth of this, but the whole resort sounds rotten to the core. Incidentally, the decision of a worker to try to take action before proves Tony E wrong, as do most of the comments, which express anger and shame.

  28. William Harwood says:

    Regarding a story of a few days ago:
    Keith Olbermann’s latest description of Sarah Palin: “There are corpses smarter than she is.”

  29. barriejohn says:

    What kind of fool would allow someone to intone over them rites in a language that they didn’t understand anyway? It is like someone in the West getting marrried and the priest reciting prayers in some completely dead language like Latin, that nobody…oh, bugger, my analogy seems to have broken down completely!

  30. barriejohn says:

    Garlic: I noticed that as well (the claim that this has been common practice for some time now). They were all very cool, and no one spoilt the proceedings by giggling or even laughing out loud, from what could be seen. Everything was done very efficiently, and the guy was never searching for words. I think that a lot of people will now be asking that their wedding videos be translated by someone who knows the lingo!

    (Let’s see whether I can get that Captcha thing right THIS time. I’ve copied the message just in case anyway!)

  31. David Anderson says:

    @ Garlic
    Sorry about the spelling Garlic, I was well into the second bottle of vino by then.