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People Staff
October 11, 2007 AT 01:00 PM EDT

After criticizing Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez, Spanish singer Alejandro Sanz won’t be allowed to give his concert on Nov. 1 in the country’s capital.

According to Mexican newspaper El Universal, during a visit to Venezuela in September 2004, the singer remarked: “I don’t like [Chávez], I don’t like leaders in other places either, or my own [leader].” The artist also added that he wasn’t in the country to cause any controversy.

Chávez sympathizers got together 230,000 signatures, which was enough for Venezuelan Higher Education Minister Luis Acuña to cancel the 38-year-old singer’s show. The governmental figure explained that musicians will always have a place to perform in the country, as long as they don’t disrespect or speak out against the country’s government.

Sanz had already sold 8,000 tickets to the concert, part of his El Tour de Los Recuerdos. The singer’s representatives are trying to see if they can reverse the cancellation.

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