H&M stores trashed in South Africa in protest over 'racist' ad

EFF members occupying an H&M store in Sandton

EFF members occupying an H&M store in Sandton

Protesters from the left-wing Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) group targeted six shops in Gauteng province, police said.

Clothes racks were pushed over, mannequins thrown on the floor and clothes destroyed in H&M stores at Sandton City and Menlyn in Johannesburg.

Members of a South African opposition party have stormed into some H&M stores to protest a promotional image of a black child wearing a sweatshirt with the words "Coolest monkey in the jungle".

Bernard Joseph, EFF Western Cape chairperson, said they were protesting against H&M, and were hoping to convince H&M management to refrain from portraying their children as monkeys coming from the jungle.

However, shortly after H&M's HR manager Randall April read out the formal apology relating to the advert to the protestors, which was issued by H&M global on January 9, Joseph was quick to voice his disappointment.

The Swedish fashion chain withdrew the green £7.99 top on its United Kingdom and U.S. websites after it caused uproar and quickly issued a statement apologising to "anyone it may have offended".

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"We trust that H&M will listen to our demands", he said.

"Am the mum and this is one of hundreds of outfits my son has modelled ... stop crying wolf all the time, unnecessary issue here ..."

She has also revealed the comments sparked a wave of online abuse and had even been called a "monkey" - the same racist slur that sparked the outrage.

"This incident is accidental in nature, but this doesn't mean we don't take it extremely serious or understand the upset and discomfort it has caused". "We, who work at H&M, can only agree", the boy's mother reportedly thinks otherwise.

'Therefore, we've not only removed the image from our channels but also the garment from our product offering'.

'We're deeply sorry that the picture was taken and we also regret the actual print.

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