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COCO-AND-KOLINDA

No, this is not the Croatian President

A 2009 picture of glamour model Coco Austin is doing the rounds on social media, with a section of online users propagating a skewed narrative that the image of Coco is that of 50-year-old Croatian President Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic.

The picture has resurfaced online after President Kitarovic won the hearts of many online users, when she flew economy class to Russia to cheer the country’s national team in the ongoing World Cup games.

After Coco’s revealing bikini picture was shared on the internet, President Kitarovic’s online popularity spiraled.

The picture is an old paparazzi shot of Coco Austin from a 2009 trip to Miami with husband Ice-T.

The incident likely came as a surprise to Grabar-Kitarovic, a Fulbright scholar and former Croatian ambassador to the U.S., who was instrumental in adding Croatia to the European Union in 2013 before becoming the nation’s first female president in January 2015.

The mix-up started on Twitter in January, 2016, with one user posting the photos of Austin, 38, with the caption, “Croatian President, new crush alert.”

Soon other users chimed in, joking that they were moving to Croatia and asking how to find the Croatian embassy to meet Grabar-Kitarovic.

Two news sites, in South Africa and the Philippines, picked up on the trend, mistakenly posting about the photos of Austin and reporting that they were of Grabar-Kitarovic before correcting the error.

Neither Grabar-Kitarovic nor Austin came out to comment about the mix-up on social media.

And now, a section of online users, who are yet to know that the bikini photo is not that of the Croatian leader, continue to suggest they’d support the Balkan nation in its bid to win the World Cup because President Grabar-Kitarovic’s striking beauty has “won them over”.

 

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