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Aug 16, 12:22 PM EDT

Justin Bieber axes Instagram amid war with Selena Gomez fans


Justin Bieber has gone nuclear in his war with fans of ex-girlfriend Selena Gomez by deleting his Instagram account.

Bieber posted several pictures of himself with Sofia Richie over the weekend. He responded to negative comments, writing "I'm gonna make my Instagram private if you guys don't stop the hate this is getting out of hand, if you guys are really fans you wouldn't be so mean to people that I like."

The comment sparked more criticism from some, reportedly including Gomez herself. Other commenters defended Bieber.

By Tuesday morning, his Instagram account with more than 77 million followers was gone.

Bieber hasn't commented, but Richie posted on Twitter Monday, "Justin is not shutting out his beliebers. He's thankful everyday for y'all, y'all got him here.. He doesn't forget that.. Period."

Gomez appeared to touch on the controversy in a Snapchat post early Tuesday morning, writing "what I said was selfish and pointless."

Richie is the daughter of singer Lionel Richie and the sister of former reality star Nicole Richie.

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