Rights group slams Kanye West for Kazakhstan gig
NEW YORK (AFP) - A rights group has hit out at hip-hop superstar Kanye West for performing at the lavish wedding party of the Kazakh president's grandson, calling the country a "human rights wasteland."
Mr Thor Halvorssen of the New York-based Human Rights Foundation said President Nursultan Nazarbayev's "regime crushes freedom of speech and association."
"Someone like Kanye, who makes a living expressing his views, would find himself in a prison under Nazarbayev's rule.
"This particular dictator's ruthless behavior includes kidnapping the families of dissidents to his rule and abusing judicial systems across the world in persecuting his opponents." West was reportedly paid US$3 million (S$3.8 million) to perform as the surprise celebrity guest at the wedding in Almaty over the weekend and his performance was pictured by guests on Twitter and Instagram.