Instagram influencers, Glamour UK slammed for taking money to tout Saudi music festival

'The regime has been working overtime and spending billions to try to rehabilitate its image'

Karen Attiah of The Washington Post called out Conde Nast and its magazine Glamour UK for promoting the MDL Beast music festival in Saudi Arabia on Sunday.

Attiah is slain writer Jamal Khashoggi's former editor at The Washington Post's Global Opinions section.

"I, along with activists and journalists have been living for the past year with risk and intimidation for daring to speak out about Jamal Khashoggi's murder, [Saudi Crown Prince] Mohammed bin Salman and the abuses under his watch. For Glamour UK to take money from KSA.. it's a slap in the face," Attiah wrote on Twitter on Sunday.

"The social changes in Saudi Arabia are indeed remarkable," Attiah wrote. "Jamal khashoggi was supportive of the changes. Until regime agents killed him. Now the regime has been working overtime and spending billions to try to rehabilitate its image, partly by using western influencers."

Attiah also called out models who posted pictures at the festival, including Victoria's Secret model Jourdan Dunn and Halima Aden, the first model to wear a hijab in Sports Illustrated Swimsuit.

Attiah said Glamour UK's posts from MDL Beast were jarring because Glamour U.S. gave her a platform to share about Khashoggi's murder in 2018.

"A year ago, I was invited to be on stage at Glamour mag's Women of the Year summit to talk about journalism, and the hellish ordeal of dealing with Jamal Khashoggi’s murder. I did my best to pour my heart out onto that stage," Attiah wrote on Twitter.

Instagram stories filmed at MDL Beast were still live on Glamour UK's account as of Sunday.


Attiah has not held back in criticizing what she sees as hypocrisy regarding the kingdom of Saudi Arabia. In November, she said she was deleting her Uber app after CEO Dara Khosrowshahi downplayed Khashoggi's death during an interview with Axios.

FOX Business' inquiry to Conde Nast was not immediately returned.