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Bella Hadid makes a statement with her keffiyeh-inspired dress at Cannes Film Festival

<i>Jacopo Raule/GC Images/Getty Images via CNN Newsource</i><br/>Bella Hadid is seen during the 77th Cannes Film Festival on Thursday
Jacopo Raule/GC Images/Getty Images via CNN Newsource
Bella Hadid is seen during the 77th Cannes Film Festival on Thursday

By Rosa Rahimi, CNN

(CNN) — Bella Hadid stepped out in a red keffiyehinspired dress at the Cannes Film Festival on Thursday, in a nod to her Palestinian heritage.

The supermodel, whose father is Palestinian-American real-estate developer Mohamed Hadid, drew praise from some on social media after she was pictured walking on the promenade in a dress by design duo Michael and Hushi.

“Our Palestinian princess,” wrote one user on X. “Loving this homage to her Palestinian roots,” praised a separate user on Instagram, while another comment read, “This is fashion with purpose.”

The supermodel later reposted a picture of the dress with the caption “Free Palestine forever” in her stories on Instagram, where she is frequently vocal about violence against Palestinians and the ongoing war in Gaza.

In October last year, she wrote in a statement posted to Instagram: “My heart is bleeding with pain from the trauma I am seeing unfold, as well as the generational trauma of my Palestinian blood,” referencing those killed by Israeli airstrikes in Gaza.

And on May 15, Hadid marked Nakba Day (commemorating the time in 1948 when an estimated 700,000 Palestinians fled or were expelled from their homes) with a post sharing her family’s history as Nakba survivors and pleading for an end to the war in Gaza.

“Please look into the eyes of the Palestinians suffering,” she wrote.

The keffiyeh scarf, on which Hadid’s dress is based, is worn across the Middle East. But in recent decades, it has come to be identified as a symbol of Palestinian identity and resistance.

Hadid’s dress is from the archives of Michael and Hushi, a New York-based brand founded by Michael Sears and Hushidar Mortezaie.

The dress retailed for $900 in September 2001 and was featured in magazines including Women’s Wear Daily and Wallpaper, according to an Instagram post by Mortezaie.

Some on social media were quick to point out that Hadid’s dress was not technically a Palestinian keffiyeh, with the colors more closely resembling those used in Jordan and Saudi Arabia.

Mortezaie, one of the original designers, explained the intentions behind the dress.

“This dress was made 23 years ago and everyone from the region was grouped as one big Other. There was no Google. Only what could be put together with little resources. Hopefully we can all learn to stand in unity and love against genocide,” he wrote on Instagram.

Another Michael and Hushi creation made its way onto “Sex and the City,” with Carrie Bradshaw sporting a black-and-white keffiyeh tank top in season 4 of the show.

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