International supermodel and influencer Bella Hadid has recently been facing controversies following an Instagram story where she appeared to press her foot against the flags of the UAE and Saudi Arabia in an airport, thereby allegedly disrespecting the citizens of the aforementioned countries.
— فارس التركي (@farooi) June 17, 2019
As a response to the ongoing controversy, The Dubai Mall has decided to call on its retailers who features the supermodel on their adds to ‘take appropriate steps’ on the matter.
Hello, thanks for your concern. We ensure you that our nation and region’s cultural sensitivities are respected. We have brought the matter to the attention of the retailers concerned to take appropriate steps.
— The Dubai Mall (@TheDubaiMall) June 20, 2019
Christian Dior, one of the known brands that work with Hadid, has since removed the visuals of Hadid. “For appeasement, Parfums Christian Dior has removed its visuals of Bella Hadid in The Dubai Mall,” a spokesperson confirmed as per a report from The National.
A video has since been circulating on Twitter on one of Hadid’s photos being taken out from a store’s make-up area, though there has been no confirmation about the brand of the said store as of posting time.
Remove #BellaHadidIsRacis photos and end your contacts with her if you want us (Emiratis and Saudis) to continue shopping from your shops/brands @TheDubaiMall @MallofEmirates @Sephora @Dior #BVLGARI #Versace #Burberry @dolcegabbana pic.twitter.com/ez6mJLuG7w
— alketbi (@alketbi99442546) June 20, 2019
Emirati Blogger Banat Zayed with a following of more than 149,000 has since been actively posting about the issue and claims that Sephora has also taken action on the matter, with the removal Hadid’s face on a particular ad.
— BanatZayed ﮼بنات ﮼زايد ??❤️?? (@banatzayed) June 22, 2019
Bella Hadid’s Instagram story may have expired, but its effects continue to ripple across the internet. The 22-year-old has already uploaded a public apology post both in English and Arabic on her Twitter account.
“I love and care so much about the Muslim and Arab side of my family, as well as my brothers and sisters throughout the world. I would never want my posts or platform to be used for hate against anyone, especially those of my own beautiful and powerful heritage,” said Hadid.
— Bella Hadid (@bellahadid) June 17, 2019
Hadid hasn’t posted anything on her social media accounts since the incident.