Iranian pop star Dariush Eghbali was due to perform at London’s Hammersmith Apollo as crowds gathered outside to protest against Supreme Leader Sayyid Ali Hosseini Khamenei. Dariush, 71, has been living in exile since Iran’s Islamic revolution due to his anti-regime activism.
Thousands of attendees to the concert were moved outside the venue after the Metropolitan Police received an “anonymous call” threatening the concert on Sunday evening.
The Metropolitan Police said the phone call was made at around 8pm and following notification of the security risk, managers at the venue decided to evacuate the 3,000 audience members.
A spokesperson from the capital’s force told MyLondon: “At 8:06pm on Sunday, October 9, police received an anonymous call making a threat towards a music venue which officers subsequently determined was likely to be the Eventim Apollo in Queen Caroline Street, W6.
“There was nothing to indicate that the threat made was genuine but at 8:21pm officers attended the venue to speak to security staff and to determine whether they were aware of anything suspicious or otherwise of concern.
“Nothing of suspicion had been brought to the attention of staff but at around 8:40pm, the venue management took the decision to evacuate as a precaution.”
Footage of the incident on social media showed crowds gathering outside of the venue chanting “death to Khamenei”, in reference to Iran’s religious supreme leader Sayyid Ali Hosseini Khamenei.
Protests have erupted across the globe in retaliation to the death of Mahsa Amini, 22, who was arrested and beaten by morality police for wearing an “improper” hijab.
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“I’ve been told by his manager that the police said there was a credible threat of a potential bomb at the venue.”
Dariush has been outspoken on Instagram to his 4.2million followers about the death of Mahsa and the deaths of protesters.
He has urged his fans to join Iranians in their fight for freedom in the country and was previously seen as a rally against Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi at the UN in New York in September.