Supermodel Bella Hadid is apologizing after being heavily criticized on Twitter for posting a photo of her shoe right on top of two aircrafts from the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia Monday.
Her post has drawn attention because Middle East countries consider pointing or placing your shoe towards someone or something disrespectful. In this culture the gesture is seen as an expression of superiority.
Hadid, 25, apologized tweeting "I would never want my posts or platform to be used for hate against anyone especially those of my own beautiful and powerful heritage."
"I love and care so much about the Muslim and Arab side of my family," she said.
The half-Palestinian and half-Dutch supermodel said she didn't see the two planes in background and that her photo, which she published on her Instagram story, "had nothing to do with politics." "I would never want to disrespect these airlines, let alone these amazing countries."
But in a short time the hashtag #BellaHadidIsRacist escalated to a trending topic worldwide with users calling for brands like Calvin Klein, Dior and Versace to cancel their ad campaigns and projects with Hadid.
Her critics in the Middle East were particularly upset because one day before the controversial picture, Hadid shared an opinion piece that blamed Saudi Arabia and the UAE for the deaths of demonstrators in Sudan, unleashing reactions from users in the region.
After the photo of Hadid's shoe one user said "I won't buy any brand's stuff dealing with racist Bella Hadid she is full of hate and racism."
Hadid, who's advocated for the Islamic community before said she'll "be more responsible when bringing awareness to all causes, including my beloved Middle Eastern community."