Cardi B apologizes for misstep and asks for peace in Armenia-Azerbaijan conflict
Rapper Cardi B took to social media Tuesday to apologize for promoting a televised virtual fundraiser for Armenia and wished peace to people on both sides of the conflict.
On Monday, the “WAP” singer posted an Instagram story publicizing the event held by the humanitarian organization Armenia Fund that is set to air in Southern California this weekend. (Her post has since expired.)
Incensed social media users on both sides of the issue responded with harsh backlash, some using the hashtag #CardiBSupportsTerrorism.
“I posted something because a business advisor told us to post it to support their country, and me and my baby father [Migos rapper Offset] said OK,” Cardi B said in a Twitter video Wednesday morning. “When I woke up, people were attacking me, saying I have the wrong information. People from one country is telling me something, and the other people from another country is telling me something else.”
Violence erupted again on Sept. 27 in the Nagorno-Karabakh region, which Armenians refer to as the Republic of Artsakh. The area is recognized internationally as part of Azerbaijan, but its population of about 150,000 is majority ethnic Armenian and historically Armenian.
In Los Angeles — which is home to more Armenians than any city other than the Armenian capital, Yerevan — the conflict galvanized the local diaspora to protest a perceived “false equivalence” in media coverage.
Hundreds of people blocked streets near the Los Angeles Times’ headquarters in El Segundo on Tuesday to protest the newspaper’s inclusion of remarks from Nasimi Aghayev, the consul general of Azerbaijan in Los Angeles.
“If there’s a problem here, it’s the false equivalence international media has drawn toward Armenia and Azerbaijan,” Alex Galitsky, communications director for the Armenian National Committee of America, Western Region, told The Times Monday. “Armenia is acting out of self-defense to preserve the existence of its people, and Azerbaijan is acting out of aggression.”
Protesters rallied outside media offices in Hollywood over the weekend in demonstrations calling attention to violence in Nagorno-Karabakh, or Artsakh, which has become the subject of renewed fighting between Armenia and Azerbaijan over the past week.
On Monday, Cardi B and Offset had been working with an Armenian consultant to sell a property the former couple shared in Atlanta, Cardi B said on social media. (Cardi filed for divorce in September.)
Their consultant, she said in a voice tweet, was “really in distress” and said “there’s a lot of terrible genocides going on in his country.” The advisor asked the rappers to post about the situation.
“And we say, ‘Sure, why not?’” Cardi B said in the same voice tweet. “You know, we love to support everybody.”
Cardi B clarified in the Twitter video that she has no family from the region and doesn’t know much about the history of the Caucasus region, nor the conflict.
“It wasn’t even my place,” she said. “And I apologize, because it wasn’t my place to post something. I should’ve done more research.
“But I don’t know what to believe,” she continued in the video. “I don’t know. One side is telling me something, the other side is telling me something else. I just want peace. … I don’t want people dying.”
In the original voice tweet, the rapper talked about waking up Tuesday morning to a barrage of comments from both sides. She hadn’t realized the issue at hand was, in fact, a conflict between two neighboring ex-Soviet republics.
“I have a lot of Armenian friends. I don’t have friends from Azerbaijan, but when I went to that country, I literally got treated like a princess,” she said in the voice tweet. “And I thought the country was so beautiful.”
“Armenia to me — I’ve seen Armenia in pictures — and I think it’s the same way,” Cardi B continued. “I think both these countries is a beautiful place for tourism, because it’s so historic.”
After an outpouring of backlash to her Instagram story, the “Hustlers” star did do a bit of homework.
As Armenia-Azerbaijan fighting intensifies over separatist region, wider rivalries could come into play
“My wish is — since I did a little bit of research today — … that both the countries would just be at peace,” Cardi B said in the voice tweet. “You guys already have big pieces of land. There’s no little tiny land that is worth chaos, death, fighting, especially in this year.
“I’m not picking sides, I love both the countries, and I’m sorry that I offended anybody,” she continued. “That is not my style. I don’t like that type of stuff. … We just really wish peace, and that’s it.”
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