Oct. 19, 2009 -- Hoping to draw attention to his country's unique challenges in the face of climate change, President Mohamed Nasheed of the Maldives, an island nation in the Indian Ocean, held the world's first underwater cabinet meeting.
Amongst the fish and coral in a blue lagoon off Girifushi Island, President Nasheed, his vice president and 11 cabinet ministers used the occasion to sign a document calling for an international effort to halt global warming.
The Maldives government intends to present the resolution, which calls for significant cuts in global greenhouse gas emissions, during the upcoming U.N. conference on climate change this December in Copenhagen.
Rising sea levels as a result of global warming threaten to submerge the Maldives within 100 years. Most of the archipelago is less than a meter (3.3 feet) above sea level.
Each member of the president's team donned scuba gear and sat at a desk equipped with nameplates and waterproof pencils. They all employed hand signals to communicate with one another.
In this photo, Vice President Mohamed Waheed add his signature to the resolution as other members of the president's team look on.
The Maldives is composed of just under 1,200 coral islands and has a population of around 350,000 citizens. In March of this year, President Nasheed pledged that his country would by carbon neutral by the end of the decade.
Photo Credit: AP Photo/Mohammed Seeneen