A Germany-based rapper has cancelled his concerts and turned to the police for protection. An Iranian ayatollah proclaimed one of Shahin Najafi’s songs blasphemy, opening the door for him to be killed.
Najafi said on Friday he had cancelled concerts in Europe, but that he wanted to continue working despite the threat to his life.
“I am young, and I am an artist, and I have to perform,” the 31-year old told German public broadcaster Deutschlandfunk, saying that he couldn’t accept the idea of living underground for a long amount of time.
Najafi’s manager said the Iranian-born musician was receiving police protection.
Iranian Grand Ayatollah Lotfollah Safi Golpaygani had accused Najafi of insulting a Shiite Islam prophet in his song “Imam Naghi,” Iranian news agency Fars reported on Wednesday. The cleric’s comments can be interpreted as a call to all Muslims to kill the 31-year-old musician.