Iran deported British soul singer Joss Stone because officials suspected she was in the country to break the law and hold a public concert.
Stone’s dream is to sing in every country on the globe. Iran was meant to be the last stop on her five-year, 200-concert mission.
«We were aware there couldn’t be a public concert as I am a woman and that is illegal in this country,» Stone wrote Wednesday on Instagram. «Personally I don’t fancy going to an Iranian prison nor am I trying to change the politics of the countries I visit nor do I wish to put other people in danger.»
«However, it seems the authority’s don’t believe we wouldn’t be playing a public show, so they have popped us on what they call the ‘black list,’ as we found out when we turned up to the immigration hall,» Stone said. «Of course I was gutted.»
Performances by women were banned in Iran after the 1979 Islamic Revolution, and harassment of female musicians has increased since President Hassan Rouhani entered office in 2013.
It is unclear what kind of performance Stone had planned in the Middle Eastern country. The Grammy Award-winning singer-songwriter and actress did praise the immigration and customs officials that detained her and her crew before deporting them the next morning, saying they were apologetic about kicking her out of the country.
«These people are genuinely nice kind people that felt bad that they couldn’t override the system,» Stone wrote.
«They said sorry all the way through this process and kept saying this till we got on the plane they were sending us away on,» Stone added. «We were the ones that should have been apologizing for not having our correct paper work.»