Nicki Minaj has cancelled her upcoming performance in Saudi Arabia.
The raunchy rapper was set to headline the Jeddah World Fest, a music festival staged on 18 July - two days before the Hajj in the holy city of Mecca.
But after widespread outcry from Muslims around the world, Nicki has pulled out - though for entirely different reasons.
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Unfortunately Nicki Minaj has cancelled her live performance at Jeddah World Fest on July 18th due to personal reasons. Ticket refunds will offered if desired. Please note the second wave of performers will be announced this week.
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Citing Saudi’s human rights record, she posted on Instagram: “After careful reflection I have decided to no longer move forward with my scheduled concert at Jeddah World Fest.
“While I want nothing more than to bring my show to fans in Saudi Arabia, after better educating myself on the issues, I believe it is important for me to make clear my support for the rights of women, the LGBTQ community and freedom of expression.”
Even Muslims in South Africa were angry at the Anaconda hitmaker’s scheduled visit during the Islamic pilgrimage.
Nicki is known for her racy outfits and booty-shaking in her live acts.
Muslim Judicial Council secretary-general Shaykh Isgaak Taliep said in a statement: “Subghanallah, I think we share the sentiment of all our people as they’ve expressed themselves on different media platforms.
“One would expect that during this particular period of the year, especially it being the Hajj season, that they would be more sensitive.
“It detracts from the usual spiritual feeling that the hujaaj get when they leave South Africa for Mecca.
“One would also expect that whatever move is made for developments, especially a Muslim government, is one where the community changes and develops in a very positive way.
“One can understand that the Saudi monarchy wants to modernise Saudi Arabia and change the image of Saudi Arabia to a more positive one, but not at the expense of our morals.”