08:33 GMT23 September 2020
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    While celebrity artist Kanye West’s studio albums have made him one of the most famous musicians in the world, his Yeezy sneaker partnership with German sportswear giant Adidas, dating to 2015, has skyrocketed the rapper-slash-designer into a footwear mogul.

    US rapper and fashion designer Kanye West has found himself in the cross-hairs on social media this week after naming two of his new Yeezy sneakers after Islamic angels in a move slammed as “disrespecting Islam”.
    The celebrity artist, who created his brand in 2009 in collaboration with Adidas, named the pairs “Yeezy Boost 350 V2 Israfil” and “Yeezy Boost 350 V2 Asriel.” 

    ​In Islam, Israfil is one of four archangels, usually depicted with a horn, which he will blow on the day of judgement. Muslims believe Asriel, typically spelt as Azrael, is the angel of death, who is said to transport the souls of the deceased.

    Users took to social media to slam the announcement by the ‘Jesus Walks’ rapper and Adidas for “making a mockery of Islam.

    A petition was started, urging Adidas to change the name of the sneakers.

    ​Others, however, wondered why the naming of the shoes should be seen as disrespectful.

    ​Nine-time Grammy Award-winning American rapper and record producer, Kanye West grabbed the fashion world’s attention after debuting sneakers designed in collaboration with Nike in 2009.

    Kim Kardashian West, left, and Kanye West arrive at the Vanity Fair Oscar Party on Sunday, Feb. 9, 2020, in Beverly Hills, Calif
    © AP Photo / Evan Agostini
    Kim Kardashian West, left, and Kanye West arrive at the Vanity Fair Oscar Party on Sunday, Feb. 9, 2020, in Beverly Hills, Calif

    The shoes, retailing at over $200, were released in limited quantities and instantly sold out.

    He then switched to Germany's Adidas as his partner, with Forbes recently reporting the celebrity artist and husband of television personality Kim Kardashian has an estimated net worth of $1.3 billion, in part attributed to his lucrative sneaker company, Yeezy.

    West gets “a 15 percent royalty on wholesale, according to sources familiar with the deal, plus a marketing fee,” according to Forbes.

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