An English-language Singaporean newspaper has apologised after running an advert of a hand holding an axe next to a front-page story about a student axe murder.
The Straits Times, an English-language daily broadsheet newspaper owned by Singapore Press Holdings, printed the ad a day after an axe was reportedly used to kill a 13-year-old student of River Valley High School.
An advert for Axe Brand mineral oil supplement, including the company logo and a raised arm brandishing an axe, appeared on the same page as the leading story.
The attack shocked the island city-state of Singapore and the newspaper’s front page mishap was spotted by many.
Following a backlash, The Straits Times issued an apology over the incident, adding: “This juxtaposition was inadvertent and unfortunate, in the light of the tragic incident. The Straits Times apologises for the distress caused.
“The advertisement had been booked in advance of news developments.”
The company added that the ad has since been removed from their website.
Axe Brand also acknowledged their ad’s apparently inappropriate placement, adding that the design was organised in December 2020 and was unintentional on their part.
A company spokesperson said: “The advertisement placement was not intentional by our company but a very unfortunate coincidence. Our company is in deep sympathy and grief with the victim’s family.”
Regarding the killing of the student, local media said a 16-year-old suspect was charged on 20th July.
He was remanded for psychiatric assessment and is expected to appear in court next month.
Meanwhile, Singaporeans have been laying wreaths, bouquets of flowers, toys, and notes outside the school.
Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said he “cannot make sense of what happened”.