KUALA LUMPUR, March 25- A concert to mark Malaysia’s Formula One Grand Prix weekend which was set to feature US star Christina Aguilera has been cancelled due to a passenger jet crash, its sponsor said Tuesday.
State oil company Petronas, which sponsors the Mercedes F1 racing team and the annual concert, said it called off the show as “a sign of respect to the families and next-of-kin of the crew and passengers of flight MH370”.
Prime Minister Najib Razak announced late Monday that the Malaysia Airlines flight, which went missing on March 8 en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing with 239 people aboard, had crashed in the southern Indian Ocean.
The concert was to be held Friday and Saturday at the Kuala Lumpur Twin Towers and feature Aguilera, Korean star Rain and R&B musician Craig Davis.
“It is truly a tragedy and we are deeply saddened about the crew and passengers of flight MH370,” said a statement by Petronas on the concert’s Facebook page.
Formula One organisers were to meet later Tuesday to discuss a possible tribute to victims at this weekend’s event.
Mercedes driver Nico Rosberg, who arrived in the Malaysian capital earlier, said on Twitter that “all my prayers go to friends & families of the passengers on # MH370”.
Malaysia will also host a EurAsia Cup golf tournament and the prestigious Laureus sports awards this week.
Laureaus World Sports Academy, which will honour last year’s top sports figures Wednesday, said it would have a reduced programme because of the disaster.
Academy chairman Edwin Moses said a football friendly between past greats would be dedicated to those hit by the disaster.