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Samoa: Apology issued for graphic front page image

Sun 19 Jun 2016 In: International News View at Wayback

Gatoaitele Savea Sano Malifa The Samoan newspaper which has caused hurt and outrage by publishing a picture of the lifeless body of a young transgender woman found in an Apia Catholic church hall on Friday morning has issued an explanation and apology. Jeanine Tuivaiki had been photographed exactly as she was found after what is increasingly being considered her suicide. The statement was written by the Sunday Samoan's editor in chief Gatoaitele Savea Sano Malifa and will be printed in tomorrow's edition of the Samoa Observer. Provided to the NZ Herald late this afternoon but hours later still not appearing on the paper's website which carried the story without the image, the apology says the graphic image was printed to highlight divisions in Samoa's religious communities. "It was a sad sight... But then behind the sadness and the pain was the image of Jesus Christ... It was as if Jeanine Tuivaiki was telling Prime Minister Tuilaepa, Pope Francis, and Rev. Mauga Motu, to make friends with everyone, and let there be peace." "And so if you're offended by it still, all we can do is apologise," he says. Nowhere in the text as reported by the Herald does Savea Sano Malifa address the indignity the written report visited on the young woman by repeated references to her as a man. If this story raises issues and you need to talk, there is ALWAYS help out there. Please call OUTLine on 0800 OUTLINE, or Rainbow Youth on (09) 376 4155. After hours you can call Lifeline's 24-hr Suicide Crisis Helpline - 0508 TAUTOKO (82 88 65).    

Credit: Daily News staff

First published: Sunday, 19th June 2016 - 8:15pm

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