- An influencer and her husband were deported from Bali after posing nude against a sacred tree.
- The Russian couple have also been banned from returning to Indonesia for six months.
- Trees and other natural features are considered holy in Balinese Hindu culture.
A Russian influencer and her husband were deported from the Indonesian island of Bali after she posted a nude photo of herself taken under a sacred 700-year-old tree.
Alina Fazleeva, who has 18,000 followers on Instagramposed naked against a banyan tree in a temple compound, by AFP. Photographed by her husband, Andrey Fazleev, the now-deleted picture immediately sparked outrage in the local community after going up on May 1. Trees and other natural features are thought to be the homes of the gods in Balinese Hindu culture and are considered sacred.
The couple was deported from the island last Friday and have been banned from re-entering Bali for at least six months, per the DPA news agency.
“They have carried out activities that endangered public order and were disrespectful to the local norms, so they are sanctioned with deportation. Their names will be included in an entry ban list,” Bali’s immigration chief Jamaruli Manihuruk told reporters, per the outlet.
Before leaving the country, the couple returned to the tree to perform a ritual to seek forgiveness.
Fazleeva apologized for her actions on Instagram in two separate posts last Friday.
In the first, she shared pictures of herself and her husband performing the ritual at the site, and wrote in Bahasa Indonesia that she “regrets” her actions and is “so embarrassed.” “I did not mean to offend you in any way,” she said in the post, addressing all Balinese and Indonesians.
In her second postwhere she posted a picture of herself with her palms pressed together, she acknowledged that she had made a “big mistake.”
“I want to tell you so that you do not repeat it. There are a lot of sacred places in Bali, and not all of them have information signs about it, as in my case. And it is very important to treat these places and traditions with respect, “she wrote in English and Bahasa Indonesia.
“First, it is important to find out if it is possible to take photos or videos in this place. I love Bali with all my heart, and once again, I apologize to all residents of Bali and ask for forgiveness! 🙏🏽🙏🏽 🙏🏽 ”
The couple has since returned to Moscow, Fazleeva shared in an Instagram update on Sunday. She did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment.
Bali deported nearly 200 people last year for various reasons, including disrespecting local customs and violating Covid rules, per AFP.
Last month, Canadian actor Jeffrey Craigen was deported from the island after sharing a video of himself dancing naked on the sacred Mount Batur.