Lego toys are often considered building blocks that help children learn while playing, but at least one bootleg company of the popular toys appeared to be promoting a dangerous message.
A toymaker in Malaysia is selling knockoffs of Lego sets with action figures that resemble terrorists and include lookalikes of Islamic State group flags and trailers filled with bombs.
Mahnun Mat Isa, 40, told the Malaysian Digest she was shocked when she saw a small toy flag with a sticker on it that said the “Allah” in Arabic along with two “terrorist” figures inside a set of “Falcon Commandos” for her son.
Australian news outlet 9News reported that the packaging also included a picture of a jihadist holding a chainsaw with a decapitated head at his feet.
According to the Malaysian Digest, Mahnun told the Malaysian newspaper Berita Harian that she bought the set from a shop in Taiping, Perak.
Pictures of the set’s packaging showed what appeared to be an Islamic State group flag along with figures donning black masks dressed in gear that is generally associated with militants.
Details on the back of the packaging showed that the toy was produced by a manufacturer in China, the Malaysian Digest reported.
In a statement, a spokeswoman for the Danish toymaker Lego denounced the knockoff item.
“The product is not a Lego product – nor are the bricks in the set Lego bricks,” spokeswoman Camilla Pedersen told RT.com, according to Free Malaysia Today. “As a company dedicated to inspiring and developing children, we would naturally never make a product like this,”
According to the digest, Mahnun told the Berita Harian that she told the police and the Perak Islamic Religious Council in Parit Buntar about the toys.
“I ask the authorities to not freely allow the entry of toys that touch on religious sensitivities in this country,” Mahnun said.
9News reported that terrorist-themed sets were seen on a major Chinese online retailer, which said it would ship them to Australia.
Sadly, this is not the first time such toys have made their way to the market. In 2008, an American manufacturer BrickArms came under fire for creating a figure that resembled Osama bin Laden wearing a headscarf and belt of grenades, 9News reported.
These seemingly innocent toys, which send a dangerous messages to our children, should not be on the market. Parents, be warned.
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