Selena Gomez Defends Beliebers and Gets into Instagram Spat with Ex Justin Bieber

"If you can't handle the hate, then stop posting pictures of your girlfriend," Gomez commented on Bieber's photo

Photo: Kevin Winter/Getty Images; Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic

Things between Selena Gomez and Justin Bieber are heating up – but not in the way Jelena fans want.

Following Bieber’s threat to make his Instagram private if Beliebers didn’t stop making negative comments about his new flame, 17-year-old Sofia Richie, Gomez left some advice for her ex.

“If you can’t handle the hate, then stop posting pictures of your girlfriend lol- It should be special between you two only,” Gomez commented on a photo of the rumored couple. “Don’t be mad at your fans. They love you and supported you before any one ever did.”

Fans applauded Gomez for coming to their defense, but Bieber was less than thrilled. He responded in the comment section, suggesting Gomez “used” him for his fame.

“It’s funny to see people that used me for attention and still try to point the finger this way,” he wrote. “Sad. All love.”

In a separate comment, he adds: “I’m not one for anyone receiving hate. Hope u can all be kind to my friends and eachother. And yes I love my belibers.”

Gomez then appeared to shoot back, “Funny how the ones that cheated multiple times, are pointing the finger at the ones that were forgiving and supportive, no wonder fans are mad. Sad. All love.”

“I cheated… Oh I forgot about you and Zayn?” Bieber reportedly replied. (Gomez previously told InStyle UK that if Malik “had asked me out on a date, I would be seen with him. Just kidding, but not kidding.”)

Although Gomez didn’t directly address Bieber, she posted a collage of photos dedicated to her fans on Instagram that seemed to throw shade at her former flame.

While the 22-year-old “Sorry” singer and the daughter of music legend Lionel Richie have not commented on their relationship, they are spending time together in Toyko, where Bieber had two Purpose World Tour shows over the weekend.

Bieber also posted six black and white photos of the pair making silly faces in the back of a car.

Following a slew of comments bashing Richie, Bieber warned fans that he would shut them out of his Instagram account if the rude behavior continued.

“I’m gonna make my Instagram private if you guys don’t stop the hate,” Bieber wrote. “This is getting out of hand, if you guys are really fans you wouldn’t be so mean to people that I like.”

Bieber and Richie have been spending a lot of time together in recent weeks. An insider told PEOPLE that Richie – who will celebrate her 18th birthday later this month – and Bieber were seen together in Laguna Beach, California, during the week and spent some time at the singer’s Toluca Lake house before jetting off to Japan.

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