The supermodel issued an apology on Twitter yesterday after followers criticised her for posting a photo of her shoe facing a Saudi Arabian and United Arab Emirates aircraft.
In Middle Eastern countries, it is considered a sign of disrespect to display the sole of your shoe towards someone or something, because it symbolises that they or it is beneath you.
“I would never want my posts or platform to be used for hate against anyone especially those of my own beautiful and powerful heritage,” she wrote in a lengthy message. “I love and care so much about the Muslim and Arab side of my family.”
Hadid, 25, is half-Palestinian and half-Dutch.
She continued, “The photo of my shoe on my story yesterday had nothing to do with politics. I promise. I never noticed the planes in the background and that is the truth. I would never mean to disrespect these airlines, let alone these amazing countries.”
Soon after Hadid posted the controversial photo on Twitter, the hashtag #BellaHadidIsRacist began trending worldwide.
One user who shared the hashtag demanded that brands like Dior, Versace, and Calvin Klein stop working with the model.
— * (@notyetofficial_) June 18, 2019
Hadid posted another tweet to reaffirm the photo was an “honest mistake on an early morning,” adding that she would never “intentionally try to offend anyone like that”.
Hadid has been outspoken about issues involving the Islamic community in the past. In March, she condemned the New Zealand mosque attack on her Instagram.
This article originally appeared on The New York Post and was reproduced with permission