Maldives apologises to couple over ‘hate’ wedding ceremony

October 30, 2010 (AFP) – The Maldivian government has apologised to a European couple abused as “swine” and “infidels” during what was supposed to be a romantic renewal of wedding vows in the Indian Ocean archipelago. Maldivian President Mohamed Nasheed “personally apologised” to the couple in a telephone conversation on Saturday afternoon, his office said in a statement.

“President Nasheed explained to the couple — who have requested anonymity — that the Maldives Police Service have arrested two members of the resort’s staff who conducted the renewal of vows ceremony.

“The president said he will personally oversee an overhaul of the way wedding vows ceremonies are conducted in the Maldives,” the statement said adding new regulations for resort weddings will be in place within a week.

Earlier, the Maldivian ambassador in Geneva conveyed to the couple the government’s “profound and heartfelt apologies,” the government said.

A video of the ceremony said to have taken place on October 11, during which the hapless couple were taunted and subjected to insulting and religious-tinged abuse, was posted on YouTube two weeks later.

The video has sparked fears for the Islamic country’s tourism-