Nicki Minaj Cancels Show in Saudi Arabia After Complaints from Human Rights Groups

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Rapper Nicki Minaj pulled out of a music festival in Saudi Arabia following backlash over the Middle Eastern country’s human rights record. Minaj cited her support for women and LGBTQ rights as reasons for pulling out of Jeddah World Fest.  
Minaj said in a statement to The New York Times that after “careful reflection” she had decided to pull out from her scheduled concert. The rapper said she wanted “nothing more than to bring my show to fans in Saudi Arabia” but she also wanted “to make clear my support for the rights of women, the LGBTQ community and freedom of expression.”
On July 2, Minaj was announced as the headline act for the Jeddah World Fest. The festival, which billed itself as “one of the biggest music events ever staged in the Middle East,” claims it is “inclusive for all people.”
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