May 28, 2012

The Vatican and the Italian fashion house Benetton reached an out-of-court settlement after the Vatican took legal action against an ad campaign that depicted Pope Benedict kissing a Muslim leader.

The settlement included the fashion company making an unspecified donation to a Catholic charity and a promise to stop the image from being used by third parties, including being displayed on the Internet, a Vatican statement said May 15.

The campaign, titled "Unhate," was unveiled Nov. 16 and featured doctored images of supposedly antagonistic world leaders in kissing scenes.

The Vatican issued a strong protest the same day, condemning the "completely unacceptable use of the image of the Holy Father, manipulated and exploited in the context of a publicity campaign for commercial ends."