Malé

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Malé (Dhivehi: މާލެ), (pronounced: /məːle/) is the capital and most populous city in the Republic of Maldives. It is located at the southern edge of North Malé Atoll (Kaafu Atoll). It is also one of the Administrative divisions of the Maldives. Traditionally it was the King's Island, from where the ancient Maldive Royal dynasties ruled and where the palace was located. The city was also called Mahal. Formerly it was a walled city surrounded by fortifications and gates (doroshi). The Royal Palace (Gan'duvaru) was destroyed along with the picturesque forts (kotte) and bastions (buruzu) when the city was remodelled under President Ibrahim Nasir's rule after the abolition of the monarchy. In recent years, the island has been considerably expanded through landfilling operations. Over the years there have been many coup attempts and protests centered in Male as a result of demand for greater democracy in the Maldives.

Contents

Overview

Although Malé is geographically located in Male, Kaafu Atoll, administratively it is not considered part of it. The central part of the city is formed by Malé Island. Three more islands are part of the city. A commercial harbour is located on Malé Island. It is the heart of all commercial activities in the country.

The central island is heavily urbanized, with the built-up area taking up essentially its entire landmass. Slightly less than one third of the nation's population lives in the capital city, and the population has increased from 20,000 people in 1987 to 100,000 people in 2006. Many, if not most, Maldivians and foreign workers in Maldives find themselves in occasional short term residence on the island since it is the only entry point to the nation and the centre of all administration and bureaucracy.

Economy

Maldivian, the airline of the Maldives, has its head office in Malé.[2]

Climate

Malé has a tropical wet and dry climate under the Koppen climate classification. The city features wet and dry seasons , with the wet season lasting from May through December and the dry season covering the remaining four months. Unlike a number of cities with this climate, Malé experiences relatively consistent temperatures throughout the course of the year, with average high temperatures of 30 degrees Celsius and average low temperatures of 25 degrees Celsius. The city averages slightly more than 1600 mm of precipitation annually.

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