Turkish seal fur magnate responds to Western criticism with new brand: ‘Fok You’
Hatem Yavuz controls 82 percent of the world’s seal fur trade.
A Turkish businessman has launched a new fur brand in reaction to criticisms over the killing of thousands of seals, calling it “Hatem Yavuz Fok You.”
Hatem Yavuz, who controls 82 percent of the world’s seal fur trade, has been harshly criticized by animal rights organizations and nongovernmental organizations from the West, as around 200,000 seals are killed per year for his business.
Yavuz unveiled his new brand at the ninth Istanbul Leather Fair, which kicked off Nov. 18, saying he wanted to give a message to Western civil society organizations with the name of his new brand, daily Vatan reported.
In the brand’s name, Yavuz uses the word “Fok,” which means “seal” in Turkish but vocally resembles “f... you” when read quickly.
“Many NGOs from Europe and the United States have told me to stop the business in the name of humanity. They tried to buy my company by collecting money. And now I am telling them: ‘Who are you speaking about humanity, civilization? What have you done for Syria or Gaza?’” Yavuz said, describing Western organizations from which he received more than 400,000 mails as “two-faced.”
Yavuz reportedly decided to launch the brand after returning from a visit to Gaza.
“Millions of Syrians fled to Turkey. Three Syrians are working with me. What has the West done for them?” he said.
Yavuz said the sector would not react against his move as his message was not for them.
The Western reaction stems from envy over the fact that his company dominates the sector, he added.
The businessman further defended his work, saying his company only hunted species approved by the United Nations, noting that there is only permission to hunt a set quota of the seven of 33 types of seals.