Famous Danish toy maker, Lego, has decided to withdraw the star wars character Jabba from its collection, with the Austria Turkish Community declaring it a victory against racism. Earlier in the year the Turkish Cultural Community of Austria protested a number of aspect of the fictional character, claiming they insulted Islam and were a negative stereotype.
following a meeting with Lego, Birol Kilic, chairman of the organisation issued a statement; “We want to thank and congratulate Lego for its decision to no longer produce Jabba’s Palace, and remove it from advertising.” However, Lego have since denied the decision was made from a group pressure, insisting it was scheduled to be discontinued at the end of 2013.
PR manager for the company, Katharina Sasse, in an interview with Britain’ The Daily Telegraph, said that product was due to be phased out at the end of 2013 anyway. “There have been no changes to the product 9516 or its lifecycle due to the dialogue with the Turkish community,” she explained.
The organisation also took exception to Jabba’s fondness for the Middle Eastern hubbly bubbly pipe, and his Princess Leia dressed only a skimpy belly-dancer’s outfit. They were also insulted by the use of a replica of Istanbul’s Hagia Sophia mosque.
Lego’s statement said that the company had always rebuffed the allegations of racism surrounding “Jabba’s Palace”, saying it had remained faithful to the Star Wars films.