Malaysian rapper arrested for ‘insulting Islam’ in new track (VIDEO)
Controversial artist Wee Meng Chee, who produces music under the moniker Namewee, was arrested on Sunday at Kuala Lumpur Airport as he returned from a trip abroad, reports the Malay Mail Online.
A video for his newest track, Oh My God, has reportedly infuriated a number of Islamic religious organisations for referencing ‘Allah’ and depicting places of worship.
According to Malaysia’s Star Online, police moved to question the rapper after complaints by at least 20 non-government groups.
In the video, Namewee makes reference to religions such as Islam, Buddhism and Christianity.
Originally released in July, the music video did contain images of a mosque. However, in a newer version published on Friday the Muslim place of worship appears to have been left on the cutting room floor.
In one scene, the 33-year-old Chee mentions Mecca in a rap beside both a Malay and Chinese temple.
“I’m totally ill-fated. Flying high to reach Mekah, Oh Allah please save me,” the lyrics roughly translate.
The arrest comes after Penang State police chief Datuk Abdul Ghafa Rajab said Chee and three other individuals were wanted for allegedly insulting the nation’s most widespread religion.
An update on the artist’s official Facebook page states Chee is now assisting investigators with their inquiries.
He has insisted the track was created to promote harmony between all religions.
“I wrote ‘Oh My God’ to promote religious harmony [and] good will, [the] purpose is clear,” he posted in a Facebook message to fans before his arrest.
“Thank you everyone for your concern. I’ll be fine.”
Infamous for his colorful language, Chee previously released a song named after Malaysia’s national anthem, in which he spoke out against government policies and inequality.
Amnesty International has reportedly condemned the musician’s detention.
“Amnesty International calls for Namewee to be released immediately and unconditionally if he is being detained purely for the peaceful exercise of his right to freedom of expression,” spokesperson Josef Roy Benedict told Malaysia's Star Online.