Rihanna asked to leave UAE mosque over photoshoot

Published: October 22, 2013

The singer did not seek permission prior to the photoshoot. PHOTO: FILE

Rihanna is known for being a controversial one, with nude photoshoots and other scandals.

So when pictures of her posing outside the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi were posted online, it came as a bit of a surprise. The mosque’s staff revealed that the singer’s actions were considered to be at odds with the ‘sanctity’ of the site and thus, she was asked to leave the compound.

It was further reported that the singer did not seek permission to conduct a photoshoot on the premises, according to Daily Mail. Photos posted on her Instagram account over the weekend show the 25-year-old posing on white marble wearing a head-to-toe hooded black jumpsuit and posing provocatively with ruby red lips.

People took to Twitter to express their views: @BinttAlthee said, “Modeling in a mosque is just plain wrong. Who let her in,” while another tweeter @Ahmedcarter wrote, “Rihanna pics at Sheikh Zayed mosque are disrespectful to the place of worship.

A spokesperson for the mosque said Rihanna had come for a private tour, but had never coordinated her visit in advance.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 mosque is a major tourist site in the United Arab Emirates’ capital.

Rihanna has not commented on Saturday’s incident.

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Reader Comments (9)

  • Oct 22, 2013 - 4:33PM

    Maybe she was just hiding from Chris Brown.Recommend

  • Fareed
    Oct 22, 2013 - 4:34PM

    So, all liberals, start convincing us that what she did was just normal and “wo bhi to musalman naam rakhti hena – Riiihaaaaaana ” !!


  • Mj
    Oct 22, 2013 - 5:04PM

    Rihanna’s photoshoot is not obscene, rather it’s the ostentatious and extravagant structure in a country built on the backs of slaves from Pakistan, India, and Bangladesh.


  • Usama
    Oct 22, 2013 - 5:38PM

    In a few days you’ll see these pics in an article “Rihanna embraces Islam” :P


  • Sparta
    Oct 22, 2013 - 6:18PM

    Her PR team should have asked for permission


  • 1984
    Oct 22, 2013 - 8:21PM

    She’s fully covered from top to bottom in traditional Muslim hijab…..How is htat provocative???


  • optimist
    Oct 22, 2013 - 8:57PM

    I have followed this news in the US press where everyone criticises her for not following rules and acting as if it she is above all and can ignore the standard procedures to enter into the mosque.
    When I saw this news in ET, I was sure the criticism would be other way round due to our whiter than white attitude.
    BTW she was in Abu Dhabi for a concert, so stop painting it as a reason for her looks/dress/religion.


  • Ahmed
    Oct 23, 2013 - 4:27PM

    Rihanaa photo shoot at a mosque is right….. Ms universe photo shoot at Taj Mahal is wrong.


  • S
    Oct 23, 2013 - 9:20PM

    Would it make a difference if she was taking photographs inside a church? What if we were taking pictures in St Paul’s Cathedral in London? Should we be stopped or asked to leave? What about the films and pictures taken of mosques, of people inside mosques? Of being in and around the Kaa’ba? We do it all the time. I don’t think she meant any disrespect and this is just being blown out of proportion. Its not about being a ‘liberal’ or thinking we’re ‘whiter than white’, its about applying the same principles across all religions and ethnic backgrounds. She obviously considered the building to be a beautiful piece of architecture despite all the Anti-Islamic sentiment. I don’t see why this is ‘news’.


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