Visitors vacationing in Maldives will now have to look for their spa treatments elsewhere as a result of the decision taken by the local government.
Protesters had gathered to raise awareness of several activities said to take place within the spas of high-end resorts that went against the Islamic code, reportedly including prostitution.
In particular, grievances with massage parlours were aired by objectors, who last week urged the government to close such venues.
The Maldives Association of Tourism Industry has reacted angrily to the news, suggesting the country’s economy will be hit if spas are shut for good and pleading for a resolution to be found.
The law of the land allows only one religion – Sunni Islam – to be followed within its boundary. However, the Maldives is a highly popular destination with British holidaymakers and honeymooners, many of whom enjoy the treatments on offer at its spas.
It is also renowned around the world for its exquisite resorts, which locals believed were promoting ‘anti-Islamic’ behavior.
A statement from the president’s office confirmed the ban and spas have been shut with immediate effect.