According to insiders at Vice, just three years after officially announcing that it would not organize any other event in the country due to the murder of journalist and dissident Jamal Khashoggi, the corporation was pursuing business once more in the country and still doing business in Saudi Arabia.
A Vice employee told The Guardian that "vice employees have for years raised concerns over the company's involvement with Saudi Arabia – and we've been fobbed off with empty statements and pathetic excuses."
Business workers disclosed that the Azimuth music festival, which took place at the beginning of the Covid epidemic and did not catch too much attention in the western media, had a budget of over 20 million dollars.
Vice Reportedly Organized A Music Festival In Saudi Arabia After Claiming It Wouldn’t Do Business There
Saudi Arabia has come under scrutiny for its history of human rights violations, some of which came from Vice Media. https://t.co/ISbJ9vrKa0
Vice's name was not used in any public marketing materials as the company's name was kept out as much as possible. Both sides seem to be a good match, as Saudi Arabia is desperately attempting to whitewash its human rights abuses with entertainment and Vice is dealing with allegations of sexual harassment.
"It is astounding that – despite ongoing opposition from staff – Vice is still happy to take money from a country that was literally responsible for the state-sanctioned murder of a journalist," said one employee, as the blood-stained money offered by Saudi Arabia has pleased Vice's greed.