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Gap sorry for Taiwan gaffe

World | Agence France-Presse May 16, 2018
US clothing retailer Gap has apologized to China over a T-shirt with a map showing the mainland but omitting Taiwan, becoming the latest foreign firm to run foul of Beijing's policy on the island. China, which considers Taiwan a rebel province awaiting reunification, has taken airlines, hotels and other companies to task in recent months for listing the island as a separate country on their websites. The Gap shirt, which was sold in overseas markets, features a map of China, but Taiwan does not appear to the southeast of the country, according to a photo of the company's online store posted on the Twitter account of the People's Daily. The Global Times said the map also omitted South Tibet and the South China Sea, and that it had prompted hundreds of people to complain on Gap's Weibo website. The US company issued its apology on Weibo, saying it "respects the integrity of China's sovereignty and territory." "We are terribly sorry for this unintentional mistake. We are doing internal checks to correct the mistake as soon as possible," Gap said. "We have removed the product from the Chinese market and destroyed them all." US hotel chain Marriott, Spanish clothing giant Zara and airlines have faced China's wrath for not classifying Taiwan as part of China. The White House hit back earlier this month, calling the demands placed on airlines "Orwellian nonsense." The Chinese Civil Aviation Administration had sent a notice to 36 foreign airlines asking them to comply with Beijing's standards.


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