Zara pulls ad over Gaza reference claims

5 months ago 119

A new advertising campaign featuring mannequins with missing limbs has prompted boycott calls by some pro-Palestine activists

Fashion brand Zara on Tuesday said it was removing an advertising campaign from its website and social media channels after fierce criticism online claimed that it resembled images of destruction in Gaza.

The move follows several days of boycott calls across Instagram, X (formerly Twitter), and TikTok over a campaign called ‘The Jacket’, which featured a model holding a mannequin seemingly wrapped in white plastic, fragments of plasterboard, a roughly painted crooked wooden box, rubble and statues, as well as other mannequins with missing limbs.

“Unfortunately, some customers felt offended by these images, which have now been removed, and saw in them something far from what was intended when they were created,” Zara said in a statement posted on its Instagram account.

The Inditex-owned fashion brand added that the ad campaign, which was conceived in July and photographed in September, presents a series of images of “unfinished sculptures in a sculptor’s studio and was created with the sole purpose of showcasing craftmade garments in an artistic context.”

The most disgusting ad I’ve ever seen in my life

They’re making fun of Palestinians being killed in #Gaza

Don't think it's a coincidence

Boycott #Zara ..Boycott all companies that support the atrocities and Genocidal acts committed by Israel#GazaHolocaust #Gaza_Geniocide pic.twitter.com/ZvhFbpp0tn

— Rahma Elfeky (@elfeky1711) December 9, 2023

The UK’s Advertising Standards Authority said it had received over 100 complaints that the imagery referenced the current conflict in Gaza and was therefore offensive.

In early November, British clothing chain M&S apologized for an Instagram video showing green, white, and red paper hats burning in a fire. The company explained that the video was part of a campaign recorded in August to “playfully show that some people don’t enjoy wearing paper Christmas hats.” However, some social media users argued the hats reflected the colors of the Palestinian flag.

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Bella Hadid attends the 69th annual Cannes Film Festival on May 18, 2016 in Cannes, France. Dior replaces pro-Palestine Bella Hadid with Israeli model – media

The Gaza conflict escalated on October 7 after the Palestinian militant group Hamas attacked Israel, killing some 1,200 people and kidnapping some 240. In response, Israel launched airstrikes and a ground operation in the Palestinian enclave. During a week-long ceasefire that began in late November, 108 hostages were released.

The death toll in Gaza has reached 18,000, about 70% of whom are reported to be women and children, and over 49,000 have been injured, according to the Palestinian Health Ministry.

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