As the United Nations warns of the risk of ‘full-scale war,’ several high profile celebrities have spoken out against the violence.
However some have faced backlash on social media, with fans accusing them of trying to ‘take both sides.’
In an Instagram post shared last night, Rihanna wrote, ‘My heart is breaking with the violence I’m seeing displayed between Israel and Palestine! I can’t bare to see it!’
Innocent Israeli and Palestinian children are hiding in bomb shelters, over 40 lives lost in Gaza alone, at least 13 of whom were also innocent children! There needs to be some kind of resolve! We are sadly watching innocent people fall victim to notions perpetuated by government and extremists, and this cycle needs to be broken!
The singer has since begun trending on Twitter as fans expressed their disappointment with her stance. One user posted, ‘Hey @rihanna Palestinians don’t have bomb shelters — we don’t have any protection. There is no shelter. Palestinians in Gaza have nowhere to hide and nowhere to go. Palestinians have no military, no nuclear weapons, we’re not bankrolled by billions of US dollars. Happy to discuss.’
Another compared her comments to the ‘all lives matter’ stance taken by opponents of the Black Lives Matter movement, with one person adding, ‘I’m disappointed. It’s not a conflict!! It’s one sided’.
Rihanna has previously spoken out in support of Palestinians, tweeting ‘#FreePalestine’ in response to a military operation in Gaza launched by Israel in 2014 that saw 2,000 Palestinians, mostly civilians including several hundred children, killed, as well as 67 Israeli soldiers and 6 civilians.
She later deleted the tweet after receiving backlash from supporters of the Israeli government.
Other celebrities that have spoken out include Gal Gadot, Zayn Malik and Bella and Gigi Hadid.
As many as 83 Palestinians, including 17 children, have been killed by Israeli air strikes in the past three days, with seven Israelis killed by Hamas rockets, BBC News reports. According to The Guardian, Israel has also moved forces to the Gaza border in anticipation of a possible ground operation.
The violence, the worst in the region since 2014, follows rising tensions in recent weeks, with several clashes between Palestinian demonstrators, Israeli police and far-right Jewish groups taking place in the past month, the New York Times reports.