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Rihanna's deleted #FreePalestine tweet invokes social media wrath

Updated July 18, 2014

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Singer Rihanna. – File photo
Singer Rihanna. – File photo

Pop sensation Rihanna is a lot of things — singing sensation, fashionista, best-selling artist, femme fatale — but she is also the queen of controversy.

Rihanna recently came under fire when she posted her support for the freedom of Palestine on Twitter, only to quickly delete it after a whopping 70,000 retweets.

According to media reports, she took down her post, which said "#FreePalestine", within minutes of being subjected to criticism.

“Praying for everyone in Palestine and across the world,” she posted.

A close friend of the singer clarified that the singer never meant to send the tweet out in the first place.

"She deleted it because it was never meant to be tweeted. She didn't even realize it was a tweet until she started hearing from her fans," said the source.

"She is a person who is pro-peace and doesn't want innocent people dying," another source added.

The 26-year-old later replaced the message with a neutral tweet:

In a statement issued after the incident, she said, “I want to own up to and explain that earlier today I sent out two tweets about saying prayers for the people in Palestine and Israel and after hearing from my followers, I decided to take down the tweets because I realised that some people were offended and hurt by what I said, and for that I apologise."

“I should have pointed out my intentions behind these tweets when I posted them. The fact is that regardless of religion and political beliefs, there are countless innocent people involved who didn’t choose this, and I pray for all of them and also for a resolution. I also pray for all the other people around the world who are caught in similar crossfires.”

The Grammy-winning singer isn’t the only high-profile name to be caught out by social media. NBA star Dwight Howard also tweeted the same message after a follower asked him for help.

Kim Kardashian was also forced to issue a statement in 2012 after she posted a flurry of controversial tweets on the Israel-Gaza debate.