For Immediate Release
Leslie Aun, WWF
Updated Statement: WWF Strongly Condemns Brazilian Ad and Apologizes to 9-11 Victims and Families
WASHINGTON - World Wildlife Fund today issued the following statement in response to an ad and video that has been linked to our organization and contains messages and images related to the events of 9-11.
"WWF reiterates our strong condemnation and repudiation of this offensive and tasteless ad and reaffirms that no one in the US organization had any knowledge or any role in the ad's creation and expresses its regret for any pain it may have caused 9-11 victims and their families.
"Earlier this week, WWF-US issued a statement based on information provided by WWF Brazil, a separate and independent organization within the international WWF network, that the ad was created by an outside agency and was not authorized by anyone within their organization.
"WWF Brazil has subsequently issued statements that have raised doubts about whether the ad concept was approved at some level within the WWF Brazil organization.
"We have now re-launched a renewed inquiry into the circumstance surrounding the creation of the ad. Additionally, we are using every resource at our disposal to remove these images everywhere they exist online because they are hurtful and disrespectful to the victims of 9-11 and their families.
"We deeply regret that the information we provided, while given in good faith, may not have been completely accurate. We stand by our earlier statements that the ad was utterly inappropriate and should never have seen the light of day. It does not in any way reflect the thoughts and feelings of the people of World Wildlife Fund. Again, WWF-US strongly condemns this ad and offers our sincere and heartfelt apologies."
The largest multinational conservation organization in the world, WWF works in 100 countries and is supported by 1.2 million members in the United States and close to 5 million globally. WWF's unique way of working combines global reach with a foundation in science, involves action at every level from local to global, and ensures the delivery of innovative solutions that meet the needs of both people and nature.