Dolce & Gabbana bow to criticism and pull ad

MILAN (Reuters) - Italian designers Dolce & Gabbana said on Tuesday they will withdraw an advertisement which shows a man pinning a woman down by her wrists after widespread criticism it condoned violence against women.

“We have decided to cancel ... the advertising image that has caused such repercussions within human interest groups and individuals,” Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana said in an emailed statement.

The advertisement showed a bare-chested man holding down a woman by her wrists while other men look casually on.

“We were looking to recreate a game of seduction in the campaign and highlight the beauty of our collections,” the designers said.

Italian union CGIL’s textile workers’ division had called for a boycott of Dolce & Gabbana products on International Women’s’ Day over the advert. Human rights group Amnesty International had called for the advertisement to be withdrawn, saying it risked “excusing violence against women”.

“It was never our intention to ... offend anyone or promote violence against women,” the designers, whose latest womenswear collection featured riding crops and silver eye-masks, added.

The Spanish government had already called for the advertisement to be banned as has Italy’s self-regulatory advertising body IAP.

Dolce & Gabbana said it was too late to withdraw the advertisement from some publications whose deadlines had already passed.