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November 22, 2016

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Auto boss ‘called Chinese bastards’

GERMAN auto giant Daimler AG — which manufactures Mercedes-Benz vehicles — yesterday sacked a top executive for China after he reportedly called all Chinese bastards and injured one person with pepper spray in a row over a parking spot in Beijing.

Sunday’s incident has lit up social media with outraged netizens demanding Rainer Gaertner, president and CEO of Daimler Trucks & Buses China Ltd, be immediately deported.

Gaertner, driving his black Mercedes, and a Chinese driver were both trying to park in the same space in a posh suburban residential area in the capital’s Shunyi District when things turned ugly.

The fracas soon escalated into a racist tirade when Gartner yelled: “I am in China one year already. The first thing I learned here is that all you Chinese are bastards,” according to the Global Times.

When his remarks drew local residents and passersby to defend the Chinese driver, Gaertner attacked them with pepper spray, injuring one, the report said.

In a statement, Daimler said the incident “is a purely private issue, which has now been resolved in an amicable manner. The details of the resolution are required to remain private and confidential between the participants, and inquiries by the authorities have been closed.”

Without commenting on the details, Daimler said it was damaging to the company’s name.

“Therefore, we have immediately relieved the manager of his position,” it said.

“We sincerely apologize for the concerns raised by this matter and the views that people have felt obliged to express following the reports of this regrettable matter.”

China is one of Daimler’s biggest markets, especially for its Mercedes-Benz cars and trucks. The company’s China sales in the 10 months to end-October accounted for 22.6 percent of its total global figure.

Reports of the incident sparked an angry online response.

It hit the top 10 most discussed topics on popular microblog Sina Weibo by yesterday morning.

Thousands took to the Mercedes-Benz page on Weibo demanding the company apologize.

The Global Times quoted a friend of the person injured in the incident complaining in an online post that:“ This type of foreigner” comes to China to earn money but dislikes their host country.”


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