German company pulls ad showing Jamaican flag being burnt

KINGSTON, Jamaica, Tuesday February 26, 2013 – The German electronics company, Saturn, has apologised and withdrawn an advertisement on television that showed the Jamaica flag being burnt.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs said that it had been engaged in quiet diplomacy with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Germany and Saturn, and that the company has decided “out of respect for the feelings of the Jamaican people”  to remove the advertisement from all its online channels and website as well as on German television.

“At no time was it the company’s intention to offend the national sentiment of the Jamaican people,” said Saturn in a letter to Jamaica’s Ambassador in Germany, Joy Wheeler.

“We must nevertheless take note of the fact that the humourous approach we selected has led to some misunderstandings in Jamaica and among Jamaicans living in Germany. We sincerely regret this and would like to apologize if we have angered or offended anyone with our ad”, Saturn said.

The letter also stated that the advertisement was meant to be “tongue-in-cheek” and was not intended to “offend the sensibilities of a segment of the population or nation or diminish the significance of the Jamaican flag”.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs here said that it has accepted the apology from Saturn and its decision to withdraw the advertisement.

Over the last weekend, the main opposition Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) had raised concerns over the issue.

JLP spokesperson on Culture, Olivia “Babsy” Grange, had called on the Portia Simpson-Miller government to address the issue.

She said that the depiction of the flag in a segment of the advertisement was unacceptable. (CMC)  Click here to receive free news bulletins via email from Caribbean360. (View sample)