Justin Bieber has been urged to pull out of his show in Saudi Arabia by the fiancee of slain Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi.
Hatice Cengiz wrote an open letter to the Sorry hitmaker in The Washington Post over the weekend, asking him to withdraw from headlining a concert in Jeddah as part of the Formula One Saudi Arabian Grand Prix on 5 December.
She insisted that his cancellation would send a message to Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, who ordered his operatives to murder Khashoggi, a columnist for the Post, inside the Saudi consulate in Turkey in October 2018, according to the CIA.
“That’s why I am writing to you with a plea: Cancel your Dec. 5 performance in Saudi Arabia. This is a unique opportunity to send a powerful message to the world that your name and talent will not be used to restore the reputation of a regime that kills its critics,” Cengiz began. “I know that you are dedicated to your fans and are traveling to Saudi Arabia on their behalf. However, there are hundreds of Saudis, of all ages, backgrounds and religious beliefs, languishing in prison, punished for merely expressing their opposition to the merciless Saudi dictatorship of MBS (bin Salman).”
She continued by calling on Bieber to use his platform to support human rights in the country, writing, “This year, you released an album that you titled Justice. You also released one (an EP) titled Freedom. Saudi Arabia is in dire need of both.”
Cengiz concluded her letter by pleading, “Do not sing for the murderers of my beloved Jamal. Please speak out and condemn his killer, Mohammed bin Salman. Your voice will be heard by millions. If you refuse to be a pawn of MBS, your message will be loud and clear: I do not perform for dictators. I choose justice and freedom over money.”
Other artists slated to perform at the concert include A$AP Rocky, David Guetta, Tiesto, and Jason Derulo.