Getty and Twitter screengrab

Bella Hadid has apologised after followers criticised her for posting a photo of her shoe facing a Saudi Arabian and United Arab Emirates aircraft.

People accused the super model of racism: in many Arab cultures shoes are considered dirty, and showing the soles are a sign of deep disrespect.

The hashtag #BellaHadidIsRacist began trending on Twitter, prompting the 22-year-old to remove the picture and issue an apology.

Others thought the internet backlash was an over-reaction.

Hadid, who is mixed Dutch and Palestinian-American heritage, wrote: “This was an honest mistake on an early morning..."

...never, ever would I intentionally try to offend anyone like that. I am so sorry ..

She went one step further and released a longer statement on her Instagram, writing:

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. I absolutely love these airlines, with the best planes and people.

Hadid added: “I want to send a sincere apology to those who ever thought I would put blame on them, especially to Saudi Arabia and the UAE… this was never the case, and I hope you can understand the misunderstanding. I will be more responsible when bringing awareness to all causes, including my beloved Middle Eastern community."

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