Tanzania: Two rappers and a producer abducted from studio by unknown people

Tanzanian rappers Roma Mkatoliki (real name Ibrahim Mussa) and Moni, as well as producer Bello bin Laden, went missing on 5 April 2017 after unidentified people raided Tongwe Records in the Masaki area of Dar es Salaam and abducted the three artists, along with another person who was in the studio at the time. Member […]

Norway: Exhibition attacked; municipality allegedly tries to keep incident quiet

On 1 March 2017, a man tore down and took four of the 25 works by cartoonist Arifur Rahman on display at an exhibition set up for newly arrived asylum seekers in the southern Norwegian city of Drøbak, reported Human Rights Service on 24 March 2017. The man, who behaved in a threatening manner, said […]

Ukraine: Art exhibition suffered multiple threats and attacks

More than a dozen masked men stormed into the Visual Culture Research Centre (VCRC) on 7 February 2017, vandalized Davyd Chychkan’s ‘The Lost Opportunity’ exhibition and beat a security guard at the venue in Ukrainian capital Kiev, reported Polish network Political Critique on 8 February 2017. VCRC reported on its Facebook page that just a […]

Mexico: Narcocorrido musician killed for singing to the wrong cartel

On 3 March 2017, Rolando Arellano Sánchez, a member of the narcocorrido band Contacto, was shot and killed by cartel members who were waiting for him outside the house of another member of the band in Tijuana city, reported Univision on 5 March 2017. Sánchez, the 22-year-old guitarist and back-up vocalist of the band, was […]

Iran: Musician and filmmaker attacked and threatened in prison

On 5 March 2017, the Center for Human Rights in Iran reported that musician Mehdi Rajabian and filmmaker Keyvan Karimi have been beaten and threatened by other inmates in Tehran’s infamous Evin Prison while being imprisoned in the ward for political prisoners. According to the organisation, authorities are violating the law by refusing to move […]

United Kingdom: Paintings stolen and vandalised; death threats received

Artist Russell Haines and members of the clergy of Gloucester Cathedral received anonymous death threats and accusations of blasphemy after several of Haines’ paintings, which were part of an exhibition held in the cathedral portraying people from a wide range of religious beliefs, were stolen or vandalised, reported The Guardian on 12 February 2017. Haines […]

USA: Artists arrested, banned, receive death threats related to Trump actions

Italian opera tenor Andrea Bocelli and US singer Jennifer Holliday both backed out from performing at the US presidential inauguration of Donald Trump just days before the event revealing they received death threats if they went ahead with their performances, reported Daily Mail on 15 January 2017. “They were saying I should kill myself or […]

Sweden: Outdoor sculpture partly burned down

Around a quarter of Lars Vilks’ large outdoor sculpture in the Kullaberg nature reserve in southwest Sweden was burned down in an incident police suspect to be arson, reported Afton Bladet on 24 November 2016. The artwork, entitled ‘Nimis’, consists of a series of wooden sculptures made out of 75 tonnes of driftwood and is […]

Australia: Singer received death threats after asking group to stop using songs

Australian rock singer Jimmy Barnes revealed on ABC’s Q&A show on 19 September 2016 that he and his family were sent death threats after he asked anti-immigration groups to stop using his songs at their rallies because he didn’t want him or his music to be “associated with hate speech”, reported The Sydney Morning Herald […]

Zimbabwe: Artist abducted and tortured

Artist and activist Silvanos Mudzvova is recovering in a Harare hospital after six armed men abducted him from his home late in the evening on 13 September 2016, drove him out of the capital city and brutally tortured him, Mudzvova told Freemuse from his hospital bed. “The people who took me were well trained and […]

Nigeria: Musician kidnapped, found, later detained allegedly due to song

Musician Ado Daukaka was abducted in Adamawa State in north-eastern Nigeria in the early hours of 25 June 2016 just after the release of his latest anti-corruption song ‘Gyara Kayanka’ (‘Put your house in order’), and found five days later on 29 June 2016 unconscious in some bushes 80 kilometres away from state capital of […]

Pakistan: Famed Sufi singer killed in drive-by shooting

Freemuse calls for counter narratives to religious extremism On 22 June 2016, one of Pakistan’s most famous singers Amjad Sabri died in the port town of Karachi after two gunmen on a motorbike shot the singer in his car just a kilometre after leaving his home. The Taliban has claimed responsibility for the killing, reported […]

Turkey: Music fans attacked at Radiohead store event

Music fans enjoying a special worldwide release event on 17 June 2016 for rock band Radiohead’s latest album at record store Velvet Indieground in the Cihangir district of Istanbul were attacked by a mob of about 20 men who took offense to people listening to music and drinking alcohol during Ramadan, reported The Guardian 18 […]

Jordan: Concert by Israeli musician in Wadi Rum cancelled

Israeli musician Nadav Dagon cancelled his appearance at a three-day music festival scheduled from 7-9 April 2016 in Jordan’s Wadi Rum desert after outcry against the performance surfaced on social media, reaching several parts of Jordan’s society and political groups, reported The Jerusalem Post on 4 April 2016. A group of members of parliament signed a […]

Italy: Nude statues covered up for Iranian president

Classic nude statues were covered up in Rome’s Capitoline museum when Iranian president Hassan Rouhani walked through its halls during his Italy visit, reported The Guardian on 27 January 2016. Rouhani and Italian prime minister Matteo Renzi held a press conference in the museum and it is supposed the statues were covered up so as […]

Algeria: Attack on famous raï singer’s concert thwarted

According to Morocco World News, Alarabiya and other media, Algerian authorities are searching for three terrorists who attempted to target Annaba Theatre, a theatre in the north-eastern city of Annaba, where raï singer Cheb Khaled was performing on 9 December 2015. A separate report by Russia Today cited Algerian media sources as saying that the Algerian army […]

China: Concert with North Korean band cancelled

The North Korean pop group Moranbong Band was scheduled to perform in Beijing, China, on 12 December 2015 to cultivate ties between the two countries, but their concert was abruptly cancelled without explanation a few hours before they were to have entered the stage at the city’s National Centre. A concert with the North Korean […]

Morocco: Film actress attacked, humiliated and exiled

The Moroccan actress Lubna Abidar who starred in the movie ‘Zin li fik’ (‘Much Loved’) has been violently attacked in Morocco and has consequently fled to France to seek asylum in a European country. Lubna Abidar was reported to have left her country on 8 November 2015, travelling to France, after being attacked and injured […]

Burundi: Musicians menaced, silenced and fleeing the country

Burundian artists are confronted with ever-shrinking possibilities for open and free political speech. Well-known singers and band members are being targeted and, if possible, manipulated to change their artistic or political style. Several musicians have fled the country. By John Banram, Freemuse correspondent – reporting from Burundi  INSIGHT  Fear of being assassinated is spreading among […]

Bangladesh: Three poets get death threats

According to The New Indian Express, Bangladesh police are investigating apparent death threats against six secular writers, days after the murder of a fourth blogger in six months. The six, who include three poets, bloggers and a journalist, all live in the southern city of Barisal and went to police after their photographs appeared on […]

Gambia: Rapper forced to flee after song criticising president goes viral

A few days after Gambian rapper Killa Ace (real name: Ali Cham) released a song critical of the Gambian regime, he started receiving threats that lead him to flee the country. In the song, entitled ‘Ku Boka C Geta G’, Killa Ace speaks against social injustices, oppression, corruption and lack of freedom of expression under […]

Pakistan: Drummer and performer killed by armed men

In Swabi in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, two people were killed in a violent attack in the middle of the night when a group of transgender dancers and musicians was returning home after performing a show at a wedding party. The attackers were waiting for the musicians and dancers in a field and tried to abduct […]

Afghanistan: Performance artist receives death threats

27-year-old Kubra Khademi’s street performance stunt protesting against sexual harassment lasted less than 10 minutes, but pictures soon ricocheted around social media, drawing anger and death threats – genuine worries in a country where women have been murdered for working as news anchors, actors and singers. She has now gone into hiding. “Her audience, almost […]

Russia: Opera premiere cancelled after its composer was attacked

The premiere of a new opera in St. Petersburg has been cancelled after two venues refused to host it and the composer was savagely beaten and death threats were issued. The opera ‘New Jerusalem’ is composed by award-winning local composer Ilya Demutsky with librettist Artyom Suslov. The opera follows the actions of an individual who […]

Pakistan: Singer killed by four gunmen

» Dawn / AFP – 19 June 2014: Pashto singer Gulnaz shot dead in Peshawar Pashto singer Gulnaz alias Muskan was killed in the Gulburg area of Peshawar Cantt. Police said unidentified gunmen entered the house of Gulnaz also known as Muskan and shot her dead. » Samaa – 19 June 2014: Pashto singer Gulnaz […]

Israel: Gaza cartoonist receives death threats

Gaza artist Majida Shaheen has been threatened for drawing a cartoon that ‘demonized’ Islamic Jihad. When Majida Shaheen on 22 January 2013 drew and published a cartoon on her Facebook page depicting Gaza Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh trying to tame an angry dog with the name “Al-Quds Brigades” — the military wing of Islamic Jihad […]

Pakistan: Five killed in cinema attacked with hand grenades

On 2 February 2014, two hand grenades hurled into a cinema hall in Peshawar killed five persons and injured 31. Police were reportedly not surprised – they had been warning cinemas for a while that they needed to step up security. A stampede following the blasts was responsible for many of the injuries. Around 100 […]

Norway: Christian heavy metal band receives death threats

The heavy metal band Antestor have recieved many death threats because of their Christian religion, reported Karoline Paulsen Årrestad for NRK, the Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation “It’s pretty disgusting,” said bass player Erik Norman Aanonsen. “Many in the black metal community feel they are a counterculture to the authorities, and especially to the church. That is […]

Denmark: Police threat assessment stops event with young poet

A debate and event with the young poet Yahya Hassan was cancelled due to a threat assessment by the police on 21 November 2013. 18-year-old Yahya Hassan of Palestinian decent is under police protection after being violently attacked and receiving death threats following the publication of his collection of 150 poems, which criticizes the Danish […]

Tanzania: Musician receives death threats for political song

Tanzanian hip-hop artist Nay wa Mitego has been receiving death threats following the release of his new song ‘Salaam Zao’ (‘Greetings’) in August 2013. The rap song’s lyrics are said to have been detested by a powerful section of the population. “They are sending text messages to try silence me. I received the first death […]

Denmark: Police investigate death threats to young poet

The 18-year-old poet Yahya Hassan received 27 threats on Facebook after a tv-interview on the Danish tv-channel DR2 where he openly criticized his parents for the way they brought him up. Yahya Hassan reported the threats to police, who have made a legal assessment of all 27 threats and reportedly are further investigating six of […]

Turkey: Ferhat Tunç concert interrupted by protesters and power cut

A group of protesters intervened in folk singer Ferhat Tunç’s concert by singing the Turkish national anthem. The concert was organised by the Peace and Democracy Party (BDP) in Dikili, Izmir. Following a power cut in the concert area, Ferhat Tunç ended the concert saying he would keep singing freedom songs. Clashes broke out between […]

Turkey: Imam who is also a musician receives threats

Imam and rock musician Ahmet Muhsin Tüzer gave a concert with a repertoire composed entirely by himself at Kaş Marina on 10 August 2013. After the concert was reported by the press, he began to receive threatening and insulting messages. ‘Imam led the prayer before concert | Rocker Imam Ahmet’. Published on youtube.com on 11 […]

Cameroon: Abducted filmmaker found with a finger cut

On 3 April 2013, the young filmmaker Richard Djimeli was found lying in the bush in the Mendong neighbourhood in the capital Yaoundé. One of his fingers had been cut. The kidnapping of Richard Fouofie Djimeli (also called Richard Djiff), a young film maker and multitalented artist, sent shock waves across the Cameroonian public, reported […]

Cameroon: Young filmmaker threatened, abducted and disappeared

Freemuse received news on 28 March 2013 that filmmaker Richard Fouofie Djimeli was abducted on 24 March in his house because of a film he has produced which is a homage to all those that lost their life trying to defend and assure the freedom of expression. Six of the film’s actors received death threats. […]

Azerbaijan: Writer Akram Aylisli under threat

A highly regarded novelist, Akram Aylisli, has had his life put in danger as angry protestors have gathered outside his home, burning copies of his book, and an opposition figure issued threats against him. A ransom of 9,500 euro has been announced to anyone who cut off Akram Aylisli’s ear. The source of the outcry […]

Several musicians brutally killed in Mexico

Several of the musicians from the Mexican group Kombo Kolombia who have been reported missing since 24 January, have been found dead. It is still uncertain how many band members that have been killed.  Kombo Kolombia had been playing a gig in a private bar on Thursday 24 January and alledgedly the muicians were abducted […]

Colombia: Ten rappers murdered for criticizing the system

Ten rappers have been murdered in the last two years in the Colombian city Medellín. Their “crime”: that they volunteered to help getting young people away from paramilitary groups and drug gangs. 14 rappers have gone underground, and even more fear for their lives, reported the Danish newspaper Arbejderen. An article in the Danish newspaper […]

Somalia: Poet, playwright and songwriter killed by unknown gunmen

Somali poet, playwright and songwriter Warsame Shire Awale was killed in the country’s capital, Mogadishu, on 29 October 2012 in the evening, reported BBC World. Warsame Shire Awale who was in his 60s worked for the Radio Kulmiye where he wrote and acted in radio plays critical of the militant group, al-Shabab, who he accused […]

Afghanistan: Death threats force Afghan actress into hiding

21-year-old actress Sahar Parniyan says she is living a nightmare after a fellow actress, Benafsha, was murdered by unknown men during the Eid celebrations in Afghanistan’s capital Kabul. Sahar Parniyan used to perform in Afghan drama serials and tv shows together with 22-year-old Benafsha. Khaama Press reported that she has changed her home address from […]

Afghanistan: 22-year-old tv actress murdered

On 20 August 2012, Benafsha, a 22-year-old tv actress, was stabbed to death as she was going to a bakery in the western part the capital Kabul. It was said that the roles Benafsha played in tv series were considered to be “against Islamic values and moralities” Benafsha was killed right after she had participated […]

Pakistan: Popular singer gunned down in music market

A young popular female singer, Ghazala Javed, was shot dead on 18 June 2012 along with her father by two unknown armed men The incident happened in the busy Mohallah Nau of Dabgari Garden in Peshawar, the capital of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan, where the singer was on her way from a beauty parlor […]

Mexico: Musicians are kidnapped and tortured

On 8 April 2012, Julio Cesar Leyva Beltran, a singer with the Mexican band Los Ciclones del Arroyo, was kidnapped and tortured after refusing to perform a song requested by a group of people at a party, police said according to several news media. 41-year-old Julio Cesar Leyva Beltran was abducted from a party in […]

Cartoonist Ali Ferzat: Revolution redefines art in Syria

BBC News interviewed the Syrian cartoonist Ali Ferzat who in August 2011 was attacked by masked men, beaten, and dumped by the side of the road. An attack which made headlines across the world. BBC News met the artist in a small art gallery behind Sloane Square in London where his sly deconstructions of authoritarianism […]

 

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