Sri Lanka blocks US rapper Akon: official

Sri Lanka's Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe arrives with flowers to receive blessings at the Gangaramaya Buddhist Temple, Colombo, Sri Lanka on Wednesday 4 April 2018. On wednesday (4), Wickremesinghe survived a no-confidence motion in the Sri Lankan parliament with a 46 vote majority after a 12-hour debate with 122 MPs voted in his support while 76 MPs voting to remove the prime minister. (Photo by Tharaka Basnayaka/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

March 23, 2010 (AFP) – Sri Lanka Tuesday said it had refused US rap star Akon entry to the island following protests that a music video he produced was offensive to Buddhists. He said Colombo decided to stop the Grammy Award-nominated star’s concert planned for April 24 despite hopes from the official Tourism Promotion Bureau that his visit would attract more holidaymakers to the island. Director General of Information Anusha Pelpita said Sri Lanka would not grant the US star a visa for next month’s planned concert at a cricket ground in Colombo.

“The government has taken into consideration the sensibilities of the Buddhists who have been offended by one of his videos which showed scantily clad women dancing in front of a Buddha statue,” Pelpita told AFP.