Indonesian Police May Cancel ‘Satanic’ Lady Gaga Concert

Conservative religious groups say the American pop star will "destroy the children's sense of morality"

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OSCAR SIAGIAN / AFP / Getty Images

Muslim activists take part in a protest against U.S. pop diva Lady Gaga's upcoming concert in Jakarta on April 29, 2012

Indonesian police on Tuesday moved to cancel Lady Gaga’s sold-out June 3 show in Jakarta by denying a crucial concert permit. “The National Police said verbally that [the concert] would not be permitted,” police spokesman Rikwanto told the Jakarta Globe. The decision came after protest groups, including the Islamic Defenders Front (FPI), assembled on the streets of the capital to denounce the “dangerous” singer, warning that her “satanic lyrics” could “destroy the children’s sense of morality.”

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Anti-Gaga protesters went so far as to threaten to send FPI members to block the singer’s arrival at Soekarno-Hatta International Airport. “We will stop her from setting foot on our land,” FPI Jakarta chairman Salim Alatas told AFP. “She had better not dare spread her satanic faith in this country.”

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The views of the FPI and its hard-line allies do not mesh with mainstream views in Indonesia. “They should not intervene against the freedom of expression,” Muhammad Imdadun Rahmat, a representative from Nahdlatul Ulama, the nation’s largest Muslim organization, told the Jakarta Post. Instead, he suggested that the government ask the Grammy Award–winning singer to respect local sensibilities by toning down her performance.

Gaga, tone it down? That seems unlikely. She’s shrugged off controversy before, including opposition from Christian groups ahead of a recent show in South Korea. What seems certain, though, is that she’ll have the support of legions of loyal fans. When news of the potential cancellation broke, her “little monsters” took to Twitter to organize a flash mob in her support, the Telegraph notes.

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