Supermodel Irina Shayk blasted for using Russian Z and ‘backing Putin’s war’

Supermodel Irina Shayk has been accused of "backing Putin’s war" by "using his ‘Z’ symbol" in a seemingly innocuous Instagram post.

The 36-year-old fashion icon captioned a picture of a traditional Olivier salad with the phrase "Russianzz on Wednesday", with many believing the double Z was a reference to the symbol adopted by Vladimir Putin's invading forces decimating Ukraine.

Instagram users quickly recalled the Russian-born star posing with a book named 'Putin' and bearing the Russian leader's stony-faced image.

READ MORE: Brit captured in Ukraine dies as pro-Russian captors blame 'medical condition'

Ukrainian journalist Maria Romanenko called for sponsors to reconsider working with the model over the post despite the fact that the model has formerly voiced her opposition to the war.

Days after the conflict escalated, she posted "No To War" on her Instagram on February 28, 2022, encouraging people to donate to Unicef and to the Red Cross Ukraine.

Even still, Romanenko wrote on Twitter: ”Irina Shayk—world-famous model from Russia who’s recently worked for @Beyonce, Jean Paul Gaultier, @Burberry, &others—posted a weird cryptic story on Instagram with the word “Russianzz”.

“I really hope these brands reconsider working with her when Russia uses Z to kill Ukrainians."

“You must be banned in [the] civilized world while you support Russian terrorism against Ukrainian people! Stay in Russia forever and forget about USA and Europe – hypocrisy,” wrote one critic.

“I can't imagine! How after all death caused by Russia you support them and write Z…” posted another.

The Z-sign is seen by some as the equivalent of the swastika and is widely used by Putin’s forces, as well as in pro-Russian propaganda.

Shayk was accused of being a “supporter of the terrorist state Russia and genocide of Ukrainians.”

Another commenter branded her a “Putin supporter” and asked: “@victoriassecret how does it feel to do collaborations with Russian fascist who supports Russia's genocidal war against Ukraine?”

Many comments referred to the carnage at Vinnytsia when 23 died, including three children.

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One asked: "Did you see those photos from [the] Vinnytsia bombardment?

“Did you see those small little bloody bodies of murdered by your Z-army kids, the age your daughter might be?

“Are you proud of it, Ms. Shaykhlislamova?

“I will never touch any brands that you promote, neither any of my friends will.

“We should boycott any company working with this monster.”

The story with the picture of the salad – a Russian speciality – vanished after 24 hours and Shayk has not commented on the hostile reaction.


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