London: British couples are being asked to avoid the Maldives as a honeymoon destination to force the country`s government to overturn the conviction of a 15-year-old girl, who was given punished after being raped by her step-father.
British Prime Minister David Cameron is also facing calls to intervene in the case of the rape victim sentenced to 100 lashes in the Maldives.
The move comes as new figures showed the appalling state of women`s rights in the Commonwealth country.
According to the Independent, many of the 500,000 tourists who holiday on the islands every year are unaware of the country`s poor record on women`s rights.
The Maldivian Government`s own figures show that 90 percent of people sentenced to flogging are female, while one in three women between the ages of 15 and 49 have suffered physical or sexual abuse over the past five years, the report said.
More than two million people worldwide have signed an online petition on Avaaz.org calling for the Maldives` President, Mohammed Waheed Hassan to do more to protect women and children in the country.
Despite promises from the Maldives Government, the 15-year-old girl still faces being flogged.