Protesters attack Yoga Day event in Maldives

Police in the Maldives used tear gas and pepper spray to contain a crowd who disrupted a yoga event on Tuesday morning hosted by the Indian High Commission, or embassy, ​​in the capital Male, an organizer said.

The crowd stormed a stadium where more than 150 people, including diplomats and government officials, participated in an event to mark the International Day of Yoga, in which participants were attacked and property destroyed, one of the organizers, who declined to name being named because he was not authorized to speak to the media, Reuters told Reuters.

Earlier, the protesters waved placards stating that yoga was against the teachings of Islam.

Islam is the state religion in the Maldives, an archipelago in the Indian Ocean with about half a million inhabitants.

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

Six people have been arrested in connection with the incident, Nashwa said.

Maldives President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih said a police investigation into the incident had begun.

“This is being treated as a serious matter and those responsible will be brought to justice soon,” Solih said on Twitter.

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