7 years ago

H&M model’s family moves house over security concerns

People protest in front of H&M store in Cape Town, South Africa, January 13, 2018. (Social Media/REUTERS)
People protest in front of H&M store in Cape Town, South Africa, January 13, 2018. (Social Media/REUTERS)

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The mother of the five-year-old H&M model caught up in a racism row has said her family has moved house in Sweden "for security reasons."

Last week, photos of Liam Mango modelling a "coolest monkey in the jungle" hoodie went viral, with social media users accusing H&M of racism.

Many were angered when Liam's mother Terry Mango defended the brand and told people to stop "crying wolf."

In South Africa, protesters vandalised H&M stores over the photos, says a BBC report.

Despite the backlash she has faced, Terry Mango still doesn't believe H&M had a racist agenda.

"I respect other people's opinion on the issue. I know racism exists, but does the shirt to me speak racism? No it doesn't," she told BBC.

Though Terry Mango has been a victim of racism and acknowledges it's a huge problem, she's been attacked by other black people for not condemning H&M.

"I [am] a sell out to them, I [am] an embarrassment to the black and African-American people. I sold my son for money," she said.

The family have moved out of their house in Stockholm following "security concerns" Terry added.

Though she did not elaborate on the safety reasons, Terry said the attacks on H&M stores in and around Johannesburg were one reason for the move.

The protests, which took place on Saturday, were organised by the radical Economic Freedom Fighters' party (EFF).

Video footage showed protesters trashing displays, kicking over clothes rails and shoving mannequins while police used rubber bullets to disperse them.

Theirs was not the only protest.

Amid calls for a global boycott of H&M, musicians The Weeknd and G-Eazy have cut ties with the company, with the former saying the advert made him feel "shocked and embarrassed".

Despite the furore, Liam Mango remains oblivious.

"He has no idea what's going on, he's only five... Liam has not experienced [racism yet]," Terry said. "I just want him to have innocence."

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