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Sean Paul threatened by Jihadists

Published:Saturday | December 27, 2014 | 12:00 AM
Nicholson
Sean Paul
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MANAGERS OF Jamaican Grammy Award-winning dancehall entertainer, Sean Paul, were yesterday still contemplating how to respond to death threats issued this week against the artiste by an extremist group in The Maldives, Asia.

At the same time, Senator A.J. Nicholson, minister of foreign affairs and foreign trade, said that until the entertainer or his management files a written complaint to his ministry, there is little help that the Government can offer.

"They have to come and make a report to us; we cannot go by news reports," said Nicholson, in reference to local and international news reports that the threats were meant to deter Sean Paul from performing at a New Year's Eve concert in The Maldives.

"It has to be brought to our attention by some official source and then we would move at it. Outside of that, we can't do or say anything," explained Nicholson, who yesterday said he was aware of the issue. "But we are not going to speculate about what we can or cannot do; we couldn't, because it would depend on the nature of his report," continued the foreign affairs minister.

According to news reports, Sean Paul was invited to perform free at the concert by The Maldives government. But a YouTube video message, which carried the logo of a group that claims to consist of Maldivian Jihadists with links to Syria, warned of the entertainer's "blood-drenched dead body" if he appeared. Said the message: "Sean Paul, who is joining from abroad in the celebration of the year 2014, is a major disbeliever."

"It (event) is for all Muslims to Jihad in the name of Allah. Hence disbelievers like Sean Paul, who are the worst of devil's advocates deserve nothing but death," the threat continued, adding that western festivals, including music produced by Sean Paul was allegedly contributing to the destruction of The Maldives.

CONTROVERSY

The matter has sparked much controversy in The Maldives, especially following conflicting statements by Maldives tourism and the Islamic affairs ministers over the future of the event.

It was not immediately clear whether or not Sean Paul will still be visiting the Asian country for the New Year's Eve event. His agent, Jerome Hamilton, said, however, that the artiste's management team was yesterday scheduled to meet to decide on the way forward.

"We haven't had a consensus on it as yet. We are suppose to meet and discuss it today (yesterday). As soon as that is done, we can comment," said Hamilton.

The 41-year-old artiste is slated to perform at the free concert in Male, the capital of The Maldives, an Indian ocean nation made up of more than 1,000 atolls, and which is known for its luxurious holiday and honeymoon getaways. According to international media, the extremist group has reported the deaths of five Maldivians this year and has taunted the police online for their failure to collar members.