Malaysian democracy activists estimate that between 300,000 and half a million people peacefully took to the streets of the capital Kuala Lumpur for 34 hours from August 29 to 30. This is much larger than the previous mobilisations by the BERSIH (literally meaning “clean”) movement for free and fair elections.
A coup led by rebel soldiers and police officers overthrew Maldives President Mohamed Nasheed on February 7. Nasheed, a democracy activist and former political prisoner, was the Indian Ocean island nation's first democratically elected president. Maldives, made up of 26 atolls, is facing destruction due to climate change. Nasheed is an outspoken campaigner for climate justice on the international stage. The rebellion was fuelled after Nasheed ordered the arrest of a judge for blocking criminal charges against allies of former Maldives dictator Maumoon Abdul Gayoom.