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H&M pulls ad after social media outcry over racism

Retail giant H&M has been forced to apologise for using a black child to model a sweatshirt with the slogan 'coolest monkey in the jungle'.

An H&M store. Picture: AFP

JOHANNESBURG - Retail giant H&M has been forced to apologise for using a black child to model a sweatshirt with the slogan "coolest monkey in the jungle".

The company removed the offending ad from its website on Monday after hundreds of social media users accused it of being racist.

However, it continues to sell the hooded top online.

The image of the child in the hoodie appeared on the British version of the Swedish retailer's online store.

H&M spokesperson Anna Eriksson says that the company apologises to anyone who may have been offended.

This is not the first time that the clothing store has found itself the centre of public backlash over a racist advert.

When the retailer launched its first store in South Africa in 2015, it was criticised on Twitter for the lack of black models in its global marketing campaign.

A Twitter user asked them why they don’t have black models on their posters to which they responded: “H&M has a major impact and it’s essential for us to convey a positive message.”

Twitter users were confused and offended by the response.

The clothing retail store later apologised.

(Edited by Refilwe Pitjeng)

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