U.S. Celebs Top Bill at Nazarbayev Wedding Party
- RIA Novosti
- Sep. 03 2013 00:00
- Last edited 16:09
Some of America's top musical celebrities performed at a lavish wedding party for the Kazakh president's grandson, reportedly for a seven-figure paycheck, media reports said.
Topping the bill at the event were U.S. rapper Kanye West and pop diva Beyonce Knowles, TMZ reported. The party was hosted by President Nursultan Nazarbayev at the luxury Royal Tulip Hotel in the nation's former capital Almaty, TMZ said.
West received a reported $3 million for playing at the party Saturday, TMZ claimed, citing unnamed local sources.
President Nazarbayev's youngest grandson Aisultan, 23, a graduate of the British army's Royal Military Academy at Sandhurst, married Alima Boranbayeva, 20, who studies at the Courtauld Institute in London and is the daughter of the chairman of a major Kazakhstan gas company.
Russian gas giant Gazprom's CEO Alexei Miller, a colleague of the bride's father, was among the wedding guests, Total.kz reported. Russian pop stars and celebrities also attended the party.
U.S. celebrities have previously come under criticism from human rights campaigners for performing for Central Asian leaders. Jennifer Lopez was slammed after she sang Happy Birthday to the president of Turkmenistan in July. Her publicist later claimed that she would not have performed there if she had been aware of the country's human rights record.
In 2011, British pop singer Sting canceled a performance for President Nazarbayev citing human rights concerns following the suppression of a demonstration by striking oil workers. Human Rights Watch claimed that "Kazakhstan's human rights record seriously deteriorated" following violent clashes in December 2011 between police and demonstrators, including the striking oil workers.
Kazakhstan has enjoyed spectacular economic growth in the last decade on the back of its vast natural resources wealth and trade with neighboring China.