South Africa: Indian origin model Shashi Naidoo faces death threats for comments on Gaza

South Africa, Shashi Naidoo, Gaza, Israel, BDS,Black Coffee

Shashi Naidoo is a South African model and actress of Indian origin and she is under fire for her support to Israel.

In mid-June, Shashi Naidoo uploaded a photo of herself with a South African DJ named Black Coffee. Coffee had recently performed in Israel in April and this instantly drew the ire of the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement volunteers in South Africa.

In one of the arguments, Shashi Naidoo rejected the claim that Israel was an apartheid state and even went to the extent of calling Gaza a sh*thole “country”.

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Her comments led to numerous death threats and Adila Dhorat of Lil Jewels released a statement saying she won’t hae Shashi Naidoo as a brand ambassador for her line anymore.

Under fire and constant criticism Shashi Naidoo later apologized and said:

It is with great humility that I step forward and not only accept, but again, sincerely and deeply apologise to all that I offended and hurt for my post in regard to the humanitarian crisis in Gaza, and my lack of understanding in my initial apology to the Muslim community. This should of been to the Palestinian people in the first instance, and broader society as a whole.

I apologise unconditionally, but I would also like to this opportunity to explain what happened with regard to my recent Instagram posts. I posted a picture with a DJ recently in Ibiza and the post attracted commentary from another Instagram user because he had played in Israel. In what I believed was defense of him, I reached out to a friend to help articulate a response and offer a secondary point of view, as to be honest, I didn’t know much about the situation (although it sure must have looked otherwise). I stupidly copied and pasted the response verbatim in a feeble attempt to appear smart on social media without reading it comprehensibly (I know), thereby entering an issue of world importance, I had no real fundamental understanding of – my biggest mistake. There is no spin. This is the truth. I expressed his worldview as my own, and for that I will forever live with the consequences. I agree with the commentary that it not only highlighted my ignorance on the issue and the way it was handled, but also made me seem uncaring and indifferent to the suffering of any human on this planet. I in no way wish to make excuses or expect people to forgive me at this time. I messed up. I know that, and I take full accountability.
All that I hope to achieve is to convey that I am sincerely sorry, and in a way thank every one who called me out, as I have learnt from this. No matter what ones beliefs are, there is always room for empathy and compassion.

The last couple of days have shown me that there is a larger education that I need to undertake on issues facing humanity. I have read the commentary and will further not only educate, but re-educate myself .
Words will never be enough to express how truly sorry I am. It will be in my actions going forward that I do better.

She has now taken a break from social media on June 21 and has not returned since then.

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Shashi Naidoo had earlier recounted that her Indian roots made her face racism as well with her teachers even saying that they will be going to hell because they did not believe in Christ.

She told a newspaper:

” I was part of the first group that was accepted into a Model C school. There were only two of us and we were both Indians. They were testing the waters by only accepting two Indian girls. Some teachers were culturally biased. They would do religious studies and it would only be about Christianity. The teacher would mock us in full view of our schoolmates and say we were going to go to hell because we didn’t believe in Christ.”

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