The L’Oreal model Amena Khan has apologised for criticising Israel in a series of tweets in 2014.
Khan has also been forced to step down over the tweets which she said she “deeply regrets.”
The tweets described Israel as an “illegal state” and another branded Israel a “child murderer.”
One read: “U repeatedly say ‘nobody is above the law.’ Well, under international law, Israel is an illegal state. Yet u support them. EXPLAIN #AskDavid’.”
Another said: “Israel = Pharoah. Both are child murderers. Insha’Allah, defeat also awaits the former; it’s only a matter of time. #HopeForGaza #SaveGaza.”
In a third post, Khan tweeted Channel 4 presenter Jon Snow: “Your children of Gaza piece was incredibly moving. Israel is a sinister state & the one who suffer most are innocent children.”
The tweets, which have now been deleted, came to light after Khan was chosen by L’Oreal to appear in a promo alongside the likes of pop star Cheryl.
In a statement posted on Twitter, Khan said: “I deeply regret the content of the tweets I made in 2014, and sincerely apologise for the upset and hurt that they have caused. Championing diversity is one of my passions, I don’t discriminate against anyone. I have chosen to delete them as they do not represent the message of harmony that I stand for.”
She continued: “I recently took part in a campaign, which excited me because it celebrated inclusivity. With deep regret, I’ve decided to step down from this campaign because the current conversations surrounding it detract from the positive and inclusive sentiment that it set out to deliver.”
A spokesperson for L’Oreal Paris UK said: “We have recently been made aware of a series of tweets posted in 2014 by Amena Khan, who was featured in a UK advertising campaign. We appreciate that Amena has since apologised for the content of these tweets and the offence they have caused.
“L’Oréal Paris is committed to tolerance and respect towards all people. We agree with her decision to step down from the campaign.”
L’Oreal is on the list of companies that the anti-Israel BDS movement recommends to boycott.
L’Oreal’s operations in Israel began in the mid-1990s. Since then, L’Oreal Israel, the company’s subsidiary in Israel, has operated a factory in the Israeli town of Migdal Ha’emek in the Lower Galilee.
The settlement of Migdal Ha’emek was established in 1952 on lands belonging to the ethnically-cleansed Palestinian village of al-Mujaydil, whose original inhabitants are still denied the right to return to their homes.
Migdal Ha’emek discriminates against Palestinian citizens of Israel, denying them the right to buy, rent or live on any part of the town, simply because they are non Jews.
L’Oreal also manufactures and exports products containing dead sea minerals, a resource found in The West Bank, which is closed to Palestinians through military and apartheid presence.
And in 2008 L’Oreal awarded a $100,000 “lifetime achievement” award to a scientist at Israel’s Weizmann Institute of Science. The Weizmann institute is a major center for clandestine research and development of nuclear, chemical and biological weapons on behalf of Israel’s military establishment with which it has close ties.
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