Nicki Minaj Pulls Out Of Saudi Arabia Concert ‘After Better Educating Myself On The Issues’
Fans in Saudi Arabia won’t see Nikki Minaj perform live. The “Queen” MC pulled out of her scheduled July 18 appearance at Jeddah World Fest to show support for women and LGBTQ rights, reported The Associated Press (AP).
In a statement to AP Minaj said, “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.”
Minaj made the decision after receiving backlash for her participation and being asked to cancel in a five-page letter by New York-based Human Rights Foundation, reported the Washington Post. Its president, Thor Halvorssen, praised Minaj’s decision.
“This is what leadership looks like. We are grateful to Nicki Minaj for her inspiring and thoughtful decision to reject the Saudi regime’s transparent attempt at using her for a public relations stunt,” Halvorssen said, while criticizing other artists like J-Lo and Mariah Carey who failed to do the same.
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But not everyone was happy with Minaj’s ‘stance for justice,’ particularly her Saudi fans, reported The Jerusalem Post.
One fan from Jeddah identified as Jamil Baabdullah on Twitter wrote, “You say you’ve educated yourself on the issues but clearly that’s not true. Good job on disappointing whatever fans you had here.”
He also called Minaj ignorant to the Saudi culture.
Another Saudi user Mohammed al7 tweeted, “I am your biggest fan and I was dying just waiting to see you in Jeddah but you disappointed me thank you.”
Minaj stood by her decision and cited an incident in Jamaica with helping inform her decision.
After immediate backlash from fans telling her not to compare Jamaica to Saudia Arabia because Jamaica has women’s rights, Minaj clarified her comments.