MMA clothing and equipment company Hayabusa has issued a statement regarding their exclusive gi made for UFC welterweight champion Georges St-Pierre at UFC 158. Hayabusa has decided to pull the gi from release and apologized for the design. An issue was raised after UFC featherweight Chan Sung Jung penned an open letter to St-Pierre that informed him of the offensive nature of the “Rising Sun.”
Hayabusa released the statement via Facebook:
Since Georges St-Pierre wore our walkout gi at UFC 158 we have received attention surrounding the negative connotation of the rising sun graphic used. The last thing we want is to offend or alienate anyone with the choice of design on our products.
We at Hayabusa have the utmost respect for culture and history and appreciate all of our customers worldwide. As such, we accept full responsibility for this design and are taking all complaints and comments very seriously.
The gi worn by GSP will not be brought to market. In addition, we will be very conscious of this specific design element when developing future communication materials and products.
Please accept our sincerest apology for any offence this has caused. If you have any questions or comments regarding this matter, please feel free to discuss it with us at email@example.com. One of our representatives will be happy to assist you.
Hayabusa Fightwear Inc.
An apology was also issued by the Facebook account of St-Pierre, who is currently on vacation, stating there was no intent to offend anyone.