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Jennifer Lopez performs for Qatar airline bosses amid human rights protest

Jennifer Lopez performed for Qatar airline bosses amid protests over the Middle-Eastern country's human rights record.

The Jenny from the Block singer, 46, was the star turn at an event at the Fox Theater in Atlanta, Georgia on Tuesday celebrating Qatar Airways expansion of flights to the city.


However the show was picketed by members of the Association of Flight Attendants, a union representing more than 60,000 airline workers.


Ahead of the gig, the union's head, Sara Nelson, published an open letter to calling on the star to pull out which read, "Qatar is one of the worst countries in the world for human trafficking and slavery. Human Rights groups are lining up against Qatar Airways and there will be a massive protest outside the Fox Theater on May 17."


The letter criticised the country for banning labour unions, and compared working conditions for immigrant workers in the country to slavery. The country's draconian legal system, under which homosexuality is illegal and adultery is punishable by flogging, was also slammed in the missive.


According to news site, AJC.com, Qatar Airways chief executive Akbar Al Baker told a press conference before the celebratory show that he was, "disappointed", by the protest and insisted his company offered its workers a, "handsome salary".


Executives at Atlanta based airline Delta, also waded into the dispute by withdrawing their decades old sponsorship of the historic Fox Theater in protest at their hosting of Jennifer's show celebrating the airline.


"When the Fox shared its decision to continue doing business with Qatar, an airline proven to engage in business practices that harm US aviation jobs and violate basic human rights, we let them know we wouldn’t be renewing our sponsorship," a statement issued by the company read.


Qatar has long been a target of criticism for human rights activists, who cite the treatment of migrant workers on construction sites in the country as being mistreated and denied basic rights.


At the time of WENN going to press, the singer had yet to publicly comment on the controversy surrounding her performance on Tuesday.