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Dutch Euro 2012 ad fazes Ukrainian officials

Dutch Euro 2012 ad fazes Ukrainian officials

A Dutch TV ad urging women to keep husbands from going to the Euro 2012 in Ukraine because of the beautiful women awaiting them there has caused controversy in the Eastern country. While some found it droll, the officials’ reaction was sharp.

Ukrainian ambassador to the Netherlands, Olexander Horin, sued Dutch company NLE, the country's largest independent energy supplier, to remove the 25-second clip which, as he put it, built the false image of Ukraine and.could drive people off visiting his country.

"I'm anxious and dismayed that it could send the wrong image, the wrong image to the Dutch people and also to the Ukrainian people, who are waiting to give their hospitality to Euro 2012 visitors," AFP quoted him as saying.

"I will ask the company to remove the commercial from television: it's a latent appeal not to visit Ukraine and the Euro 2012," he added.

The commercial started with a woman, apparently a Dutch wife, typing “ukr” in a Google search and clicking in the popped-up "Ukrainian women." The series of images for most its part showing young ladies in lingerie and suggestive positions puts the woman on a constrained alert.

She would then click on another website to buy a do-it-yourself beer tap, before closing the computer as her husband watches a football match in the background. The subtitle read "keep them at home".

NLE's chief executive Harald Swinkels cooled down the emotions saying it "obviously played on humour and cliches".

"It's only an advertising campaign by a Dutch company, broadcast in the Netherlands: it's not going to stop people from going to the Ukraine," he told AFP, saying it will be aired on television for the next eight weeks.

The two men reportedly met earlier this week as Swinkels tried to let Horin into the specifics of the Dutch humor.

Euro 2012 kicks off on June 8 in Warsaw and ends on July 1 in the Ukrainian capital city of Kiev. The Netherlands meet Denmark, Germany and Portugal with all games to be played in Kharkov, Ukraine.

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