Last year’s Arab Idol winner Mohammed Assaf has won the Best Middle East Act by MTV European Music Awards.
The Palestinian native singer, who has recently released his debut album, continued to wow audiences and gain success by receiving the impressive honour, as well as an opportunity to be eligible for MTV’s Best Worldwide Act.
The singer beat fellow nominees for the Best Middle East Act award including Lebanese singer Jana, the Egyptian band Cairokee, Moroccan singer Saad Lamjarred and Saudi DJ/producer Omar Bassad, making Assaf the first Palestinian to ever win an MTV European Music Award.
Voting will close on October 29 for the final list of 10 Worldwide Act nominees. Results are expected to be announced a day later. However, fans can still vote for their favourite artists in other categories until November 8 on mtvema.com.
This year’s MTV EMAs will be hosted by hip hop singer Nicki Minaj and will be broadcast live from Glasgow, Scotland, on November 9, where the winner will be formally announced.
The honour marks an extraordinary goal and opportunity for the Palestinian refugee who grew up in the Khan Younis camp in Gaza. He uses his voice, both as a refugee and singer, to support young people from Palestine, giving them hope and aspiration.
The official website of the agency reads: “With the universal language of his music, he carries the message of UNRWA and young Palestine refugees to new audiences, including in the region – to Dubai and Kuwait – and even further”.
Assaf, who has been named Regional Youth Ambassador for the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) for Palestine Refugees, spoke for the people of his country at a special UN session for the ‘International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People’, at New York City in 2013.
Calling for the end of the Israeli-imposed blockage, Assaf has released the following video: