Beyonce postpones Malaysia show targeted by Islamic party

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The Independent Culture

US singer Beyonce Knowles has postponed her concert in Malaysia planned for this weekend, organisers said Monday, denying that the move was linked to threats of protests by Muslim groups.

The R&B star was scheduled to perform on Sunday at a stadium on the outskirts of Kuala Lumpur, two years after she cancelled her debut concert here amid fears of protests by conservative Muslim groups.

"The postponement is solely the decision of the artiste and has nothing to do with other external reasons," the event organiser Marctensia said in a statement.

It said a new date for the concert will be announced "shortly" and more details will be released this week.

The conservative Pan-Malaysian Islamic party (PAS), which has called for a ban on Beyonce's performance, said the event should be cancelled outright rather than merely be postponed.

"We are not against entertainment, but it's the way she performs -- her gyrating moves on stage and her sexy outfits. It will erode the moral values of our young people," PAS youth chief Nasruddin Hassan Tantawi told AFP.

The concert was part of Beyonce's "I am..." world tour, which has seen her perform in North America and Europe.

Marctensia had indicated the singer would tone down her dress for the Malaysian performance, saying earlier that "all parties have come to an amicable understanding on the matter".

Performances by foreign bands frequently come under fire in Malaysia -- a multicultural country with a Muslim Malay majority and ethnic Chinese and Indian minorities -- with PAS typically leading the charge.

US hip-hop band the Black Eyed Peas played in front of a multiracial audience last month after a ban on Muslims was lifted, although frontwoman Fergie was forced to cover up.

PAS called for Danish band Michael Learns to Rock to be banned from performing in September, saying it was an insult to Muslims during the fasting month of Ramadan.

It also held protests against Canadian rocker Avril Lavigne's concert last year after failing to have it banned, while a performance by Gwen Stefani went ahead despite allegations it would weaken youth "morally and mentally".