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Screengrab of Assala Nasri's music video 'Love and Peace' Image Credit: YouTube Screengrab

Abu Dhabi: Top Arab singer Assala Nasri’s song ‘Love and Peace’ has triggered a heated debate on social media over the use of photos of a number of Arab and foreign political leaders in the music video.

The lyrics of her new song, written and composed by Mohammed Rahim, did not attract as much attention as the usage of images of leaders such as Libyan historical figure Omar Al Mukhtar, the late President of Egypt Anwar Sadat, in addition to other non-Arab figures such as Mahatma Gandhi and former Apple head, the late Steve Jobs.

Twitter users fiercely attacked Nasri and viewed her as an artist who is now seeking to get closer to political regimes.

The song, posted on her YouTube channel, received nearly four million views in less than two days.

“This song drove me crazy, it made me happy, cry and dance, all these feelings in the same time,” Nasri said on Twitter.

Syrian star

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Assala Nasri in 'Love and Peace' Image Credit: YouTube Screengrab

Nasri was born on May 15, 1969 in Damascus, Syria to a middle class family. Her father Mostafa Nasri was a revered composer and singer himself.

Nasri began her musical career by performing patriotic, religious and children’s songs when she was four years old.

In 1986, Mostafa Nasri died after suffering from internal bleeding caused by a car accident. Aged 17, Assala helped care for her four siblings with her mother.

Her musical career started in 1991 with an album that included four songs, but it was in 1993 when fame found her after she released her album, ‘If You Know’.

The album had four Egyptian songs of the oriental classic tarab style. It became an instant hit with heartbreaking songs like ‘Ya Sabra Yana’ and ‘Samehtak Ketir’.

She quickly cemented her presence in the Arab world’s growing music industry brimming with singers like Angham, Najwa Karam, Latifa and Abdel Majeed Abdullah.

Nasri, 51, is one of the most popular singers in the Arab world and is famous for her strong, melodious voice. Since the beginning of the Syrian Civil war in 2011, Nasri has supported the Syrian rebels and strongly opposed Syrian President Bashar Al Assad.

She released numerous successful songs throughout her career, such as ‘Ya Magnoon’ (Oh Madman), ‘Shakhsya Aneeda’(Stubborn person), and ‘Tasawar’ (Imagine) and ‘Shamekh’, among others.

Nasri also made an appearance in the movie ‘Welad Rezk Part 2’ (Rezk Sons), as a guest of honour in her first acting role.

The sequel stars Ahmed Ezz, Amr Youssef, Ahmed Dawood, Ahmed Al Fishawi, Mohammed Mamdouh and Karim Qasim. It is written by Salah Al Jehini, directed by Tarek Al Erian and made by Raw Production Company.

Nasri recently filed for divorce from the famous Egyptian director and producer Al Erian to whom she has been married for 14 years.