German supermarket giant Lidl has been caught doctoring pictures of the iconic Anastasis Church in Santorini, Greece, which appear on some of its products, to erase the crosses which adorn the building.
Images of the world-renowned church were used for the packaging of its Eridanous brand Greek-style yoghurt — an in-house label which also includes a range of feta cheese, moussaka, and pistachio products, according to RTL Info.
A spokesman for the low-cost retailer — which has hundreds of stores throughout Europe and the United Kingdom — justified the Soviet-style alterations by saying: “We avoid the use of religious symbols because we do not wish to exclude any religious beliefs.”
They added: “We are a company that respects diversity and this is what explains the design of this packaging.”
Christians in Australia told to hide crosses after Arabic-speaking gang shouting "F*** Jesus!" attacks couple. https://t.co/BCH3glOcoz
— Jack Montgomery ن (@JackBMontgomery) April 10, 2017
The rationale behind the supermarket’s belief that erasing Christian iconography from Christian religious buildings is “respecting diversity” is left unclear, and its statement that “we avoid the use of religious symbols because we do not wish to exclude any religious beliefs” does not appear to be wholly accurate.
Searching the company’s product range online appears to show a number of items with are certified as Halal — which is to say, slaughtered in accordance with controversial Islamic religious requirements, so as to be permissible for devout Muslims to eat.
Some of these products appear to feature logos featuring minarets or buildings with minarets — Islamic religious architecture from which the ‘call to prayer’ is issued five times a day by a muezzin (crier).
Aldi defends decision to close till to customers after a 'Muslim' worker expressed 'concerns' about serving alcohol https://t.co/qbcCoovNcm
— Daily Mail U.K. (@DailyMailUK) August 26, 2017
The news comes shortly after Aldi — another low-cost German retailer — courted controversy by putting up a sign in a store in Northampton, England, advising customers that they could not purchase alcohol at a till manned by a cashier thought to be Muslim.
“If a colleague raises concerns about a job they have been asked to do, our approach is to try and find a solution,” a spokesman told the MailOnline.
“In this instance, we informed customers via a sign on the tills that our colleague would not be serving alcohol.”
This accommodating stance stands in sharp contrast to some Christain workers and business owners in the United Kingdom.
Former nurse Sarah Kuteh was sacked by the NHS for offering to pray with patients prior to surgery, and the Christian-owned Ashers bakery in Northern Ireland was hammered with huge legal bills after judges deemed it broke the law by declining to prepare a cake with the slogan ‘Support Gay Marriage’.