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Rihanna Asked to Leave UAE Mosque Over Fashion-Style Photo Shoot
Overseers of Abu Dhabi's Grand Mosque say they asked Rihanna to leave the compound after she posed for photographs considered to be at odds with the "sanctity" of the site.
Rihanna hasn't publicly responded to the actions by staff at the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque. Her show took place on Saturday (Oct.19) in Abu Dhabi.
Photos posted on various websites, including the singer's own Instagram (see one above), show the singer posing on white marble, dressed fully in black, with her hair covered according to the mosque's guidelines.
The mosque statement, published Monday in local newspapers, said Rihanna was in an area normally off limits for visitors. It says the fashion-style photo session violated rules on the "status and sanctity of the mosque."
"The Centre strives to ensure that visitors enter the mosque in a decent fashion, and refrain from behaving in any way that is inconsistent with the sanctity of this religious place," the statement read. "Here, the Centre refers to a recent incident, involving a singer who came for a private visit to the mosque, at a gate that is not reserved for visitors, without prior coordination with the Centre’s management and without identifying herself."
Commenters to her Instagram feed were mixed in their feelings about the photos. "I'll ALWAYS love YOU Riri You are incrçedible...The Photos are AMAZING!! BREAKING RULES!!" wrote one. Yet another wrote: "OMG I HATE U YOU ARE SO DISRESPECTFUL."
The mosque is a major tourist site in the United Arab Emirates' capital.
- This article first appeared on THR.com