Russian influencer Alesya Kafelnikova has apologised for posing nude on top of an endangered elephant in Bali and issued a statement on Instagram after her viral pictures enraged the internet. Daughter of Russian tennis great Yevgeny Kafelnikov, Alesya, 22, had shared a video earlier in February in which she was seen lying nude on the endangered Sumatran elephant.
"Natural vibes," Alesya had said in the caption of her post. In another post, she shared a picture with the elephant as the caption read, "To love nature is human nature."
Although her pictures went viral on social media, several sections slammed Alesya for posting them. "Aren't you ashamed," one of the comments on her post said, The Sun reports. Another user censured her photoshoot as a "violation" against the animal.
In her apology note, Alesya clarified as she said, "My intention with these pictures was to show you that I love and respect animals and especially elephants more than anything." She added, "It was a private photoshoot, I didn't have a purpose to hurt the feelings of local people at all. We love Balinese culture and respect Indonesian rules. Please sorry if you see something else in this."
Alesya also said, "I would wish that all those who are so negative will awaken an aesthetic love for my post and you will see the wonderful beauty in it!"
Speaking for her love for animals, Alesya, however, added, "It is a pity that people see this as vulgarity, and not as a beauty and love for nature."
Read her full post here:
Alesya, in fact, was also criticised by the charity Save the Asian Elephants. A spokesperson from the charity told The Sun, "Yet another tragic trivialisation of the majestic Asian elephant when the species is fighting for its very existence against brutal abuse in tourism and human 'entertainment'."
The Sumatran elephant was changed from 'Endangered' to 'Critically Endangered' by the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) in 2012.