The U.S. Department of State has expressed concerns about the treatment of rapper A$AP Rocky, following his arrest in Sweden earlier this month for a street fight.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has been briefed on the hip-hop star’s detention and special presidential envoy for hostage affairs, Robert O’Brien, is monitoring the case, Politico reported Sunday.
“There are certainly some facts about the arrest and detention that raise concerns,” a State Department spokesperson told the website.
“We expect all governments, including Sweden, to treat American citizens fairly and with respect,” the spokesperson added. “We hope to see A$AP Rocky and his colleagues back on tour and reunited with friends and family soon.”
Rocky’s attorney, Alan Jackson, is hoping U.S. authorities can negotiate the rapper’s release.
“Secretary Pompeo and Ambassador O’Brien have been relentless in their diplomatic efforts on behalf of American citizens being held all over the world. Rocky’s millions of fans worldwide are putting their trust in the State Department to get Rocky home,” Jackson said.
Rocky, real name Rakim Mayers, was arrested on July 2 after voluntarily going to a police station for questioning about a fight on the streets of Stockholm. The confrontation happened when two men approached Rocky and his security team as they walked down the street.
The rapper was in Stockholm to perform at the Smash hip hop festival.
Viral video of the incident showed the rapper grabbing a man and tossing him to the ground. A$AP Rocky then posted his own clips of the brawl on Instagram, saying he was defending himself after being attacked by “drug addicts.”
“We don’t know these guys and we didn’t want trouble, they followed us for 4 blocks, and they were slapping girls butts who passed, give me a break,” he captioned his post.
Swedish prosecutors have until Friday to decide whether to prosecute the rapper, who is being held in solitary confinement.
A Change.org petition demanding Rocky’s release has been signed by nearly 600,000 people as of Monday.