Bella Hadid to Instagram: ‘Are we not allowed to be Palestinian?’

American Supermodel Bella Hadid lashed out at Instagram on Tuesday, after she claimed the video-sharing social network removed a photo of her Palestinian-born father’s American passport from her “story.”

Her father, American-Palestinian real estate developer Mohamed Hadid, was born in British-mandated Palestine in 1948, and is well-known for building luxury hotels and mansions in California. The passport displays his place of birth as Palestine. Bella intended to use the photo of his passport in her story to proudly display her Palestinian heritage to her 31.5 million followers.

However, Instagram removed the post

Hadid shared a screenshot of a message she received from Instagram after they flagged the July 2 post, to which they cited their “Community Guidelines on harassment and bullying.” In the message, Instagram detailed the guideline violations, to which they gave reasons of graphic violence, hate speech, harassment, bullying, nudity and sexual activity.

“Instagram removed my story that only said ‘My baba and his birthplace of Palestine’ with a photograph of his American passport,” she said following the flag, on Instagram. “Instagram exactly what part of his me being proud of my father’s birthplace of Palestine is ‘bullying, harassment, graphic, or sexual nudity?’ Are we not allowed to be Palestinian on Instagram? This, to me, is bullying.”

“You can’t erase history by silencing people. It doesn’t work like that. Do you want him to change his birthplace for you?,” she concluded.

Instagram responded to the violations, claiming that it was an error on their part. They explained that, in order to protect their community, they do not allow users to share personal information. They further clarified that the platform does not discriminate on race, ethnicity or nationality, and the post was not removed because of her reference to Palestine.

“To protect the privacy of our community, we don’t allow people to post personal information, such as passport numbers, on Instagram. In this case the passport number was blurred out, so this content shouldn’t have been removed,” read the statement. “We’ve restored the content and apologize to Bella for the mistake,” a spokesperson for Facebook, which owns Instagram, said in a press statement to PEOPLE and PageSix.

Leave comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked with *.