March 4, 2011 — -- The pop superstar Usher announced today he'd give away the money he received for his performance at a reported $1 million party for Moammar Gadhafi's son in 2009. He follows in the footsteps of other A-list celebrities, including Beyonce, Mariah Carey and Nelly Furtado.
"I am sincerely troubled to learn about the circumstances surrounding the Nikki Beach St. Barts event that took place on New Year's Eve 2009," Usher said in a statement to ABC News and other organizations. "I will be donating all of my personal proceeds from that event to various human rights organizations."
Usher has already committed a donation to Amnesty International, a representative for the singer said. That donation will be used to "support this urgent work to counter the brutal conditions like those imposed by Gadhafi and other leaders across the Middle East," Amnesty International said in a statement.
Leaked U.S. State Department documents, posted on the website WikiLeaks, describe the New Year's Eve Party on St. Barts for Moammar Gadhafi's son, Mutassim, at which Usher and Beyonce performed. The year before, Mariah Carey performed at a similar party for the dictator's son, according to the documents.
Each of the performers announced this week that they had already donated, or would be donating, the proceeds from the performance to charity. The announcements came after singer Nelly Furtado, who said she performed for the "Gadhafi clan" at an Italian hotel in 2007 for $1 million, told her fans via Twitter she would be giving the money away.
Usher Gives Back Money From Performance for Gadhafi's Son
"I was naive and unaware of who I was booked to perform for," Carey said in her statement, posted on her website Thursday. "I feel horrible and embarrassed to have participated in this mess. Going forward, this is a lesson for all artists to learn from. We need to be more aware and take more responsibility regardless of who books our shows. Ultimately we as artists are to be held accountable."
Video of the New Year's 2009 party at which Usher and Beyonce performed, shot by a party-goer and obtained by ABC News, shows an intimate affair with Beyonce singing several songs just feet away from attendees.
Two days after Gadhafi told ABC News' Christiane Amanpour that his people "love" him and he cannot step down from power despite the vocal uprising against him, a violent struggle for control of the country continues.
Fighters loyal to Gadhafi attacked an opposition-controlled city today in a battle that cost 37 lives, according to a report by The Associated Press.
As Gadhafi loses control of several cities, evidence of brutal repression is surfacing. In Benghazi, ABC News toured an underground prison in which prisoners were detained and forgotten about, in the words of one former Libyan soldier.