WASHINGTON: Nicki Minaj has canceled her performance in Saudi Arabia, the US rapper said on Tuesday.
Minaj’s scheduled appearance in the western city of Jeddah next week as part of a cultural festival had triggered a social media backlash.
“After careful reflection I have decided to no longer move forward with my scheduled concert at Jeddah World Fest,” Minaj said in a statement sent to AFP by her publicist.
“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.”
Minaj, known for her profanity-laced lyrics and raunchy music videos, was due to perform as headline act of the festival – to be televised globally on MTV.
Others scheduled to perform include British musician Liam Payne and American DJ Steve Aoki.
The New York-based Human Rights Foundation on Friday wrote Minaj an open letter urging her to withdraw from the festival.