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Concerts by the pop group SMAP scheduled for next month in Shanghai will be postponed, the group’s agent, Johnny and Associates, said Tuesday, citing the necessity to ensure audience safety.

No replacement dates were announced.

The talent agency said it made the decision after considering “the recent situation.”

The announcement followed reports that ticket sales for the concerts scheduled for Oct. 9 and 10 had been suspended, likely due to the diplomatic row over Japan’s arrest of the captain of a Chinese fishing boat.

Johnny and Associates said it will make an announcement as soon as it reschedules the concerts and will refund those who bought tickets for the canceled shows.

The refunds will be made by Oct. 31, Johnny and Associates said.

The concerts, to be held in a major stadium in Shanghai, would have been the first-ever overseas performances by the all-male group.

SMAP’s five members were initially scheduled to take part in an event at the Shanghai World Expo in June, but the Chinese authorities canceled it citing security considerations given the large number of fans expected.

The Chinese side and SMAP’s agent then agreed to hold the concerts in October at the Shanghai stadium.

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