NEW YORK (June 30, 2013)--Jennifer Lopez sang "Happy Birthday" to the leader of Turkmenistan, Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedow, during a performance, but her representative says if she had known there were human rights issues in the country, she wouldn't have performed there at all.
Lopez performed in the former Soviet bloc country on Saturday night, according to statement released by her publicist that said it was for the China National Petroleum Corp. and wasn't a political event.
But Berdimuhamedow did attend.
He’s been criticized for oppressive rule by human rights organizations.
The statement said the event was vetted by Lopez's representatives, but said she wouldn't have attended if she had known about the accusations.
According to the statement, the birthday song was a last-minute request made by the company to Lopez and she "graciously obliged."