The U.S.-based, multinational beverage corporation Coca Cola has apologized for the use of a map of Russia that includes the territory of Crimea on a popular social network. They said the map was developed by a third party agency without the company's consent.
On January 5th, Coca-Cola responded to a statement by the Ukrainian Embassy in the United States, which included the complaint about the corporation’s use of the map. The company claimed that the agency that developed the map "later changed it without our knowledge and consent." The map has since then been removed.
"We do not support any political movements and parties. Our task is to produce high-quality beverages," they stated.
Earlier, the Ukrainian Embassy stated that the Coca-Cola’s actions were contrary to the official position of the United States, which considers Crimea an occupied part of Ukraine. Because of the incident with the map a number of deputies of the Verkhovna Rada called for a boycott of the company's products.
During a Christmas promotion last year, the Russian branch of Coca-Cola placed a stylized map of Russia—without the Crimea—on the Russian social network VKontakte. After numerous complaints by Russian users Crimea was added to the map and the company apologized.