Celebs rally round battered Rihanna

SUPPORTIVE: Gabrielle Union. 15/02/09. © Unknown.
SUPPORTIVE: Gabrielle Union. 15/02/09. © Unknown.

R&B superstar Akon and actress Gabrielle Union have offered Rihanna words of support following her alleged fight with ex-boyfriend Chris Brown - urging her to stay strong.

R&B superstar Akon and actress Gabrielle Union have offered Rihanna words of support following her alleged fight with ex-boyfriend Chris Brown - urging her to stay strong.

Rihanna has been in hiding since she and Brown were reportedly involved in a nasty dispute last week which allegedly left the Umbrella star needing hospital treatment.

Brown subsequently turned himself over to police and was charged with making criminal threats.

The Kiss Kiss singer later broke his silence, releasing a statement stating he was "saddened" by the incident, and that he was seeking solace in getting counselling from his pastor and his family.

The story has since dominated news headlines, with many of Rihanna's contemporaries and friends voicing their opinions on the subject, including Jessica Alba and Kerry Washington.

Rihanna's mentor Jay-Z also tackled the delicate topic, asking the public and the media to support the star, saying: "She's going through a tough time. You have to realise she's a young girl, as well. She's very young."

And now, Bad Boys II actress Gabrielle Union - a pal of Rihanna and Brown - insists that although the incident is regrettable, she hopes the high-profile case will help to get people rallying against domestic violence.

She says: "I know them both. Unfortunately, no one knows all the facts yet . what I think is great about this unfortunate situation is it can get us talking about violence . violence is never the answer. It's good to get that dialogue started. I wish this wasn't the catalyst for that . it's never good to use violence as a means to an end."

Akon has also reached out to Rihanna to offer his support.

He says: "Keep doing what you're doing baby. Keep things positive! She's a strong woman. I think she'll get through it." - Wenn

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