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The scandal surrounding Rick Ross's song U.O.E.N.O," —in which Ross brags about drugging a girls champagne and having sex with her without her knowledge—culminated yesterday afternoon when Reebok reportedly severed ties with the rapper.
TMZ reports that the sneaker brand dumped Ross, and other media outlets, including WWD, have jumped on the story—though none reference an official statement from Reebok that they are ending their relationship with Ross.
Here's what Reebok did say to TMZ:
"Reebok holds our partners to a high standard, and we expect them to live up to the values of our brand. Unfortunately, Rick Ross has failed to do so. While we do not believe that Rick Ross condones sexual assault, we are very disappointed he has yet to display an understanding of the seriousness of this issue or an appropriate level of remorse."
In early April, after women's group UltraViolet began to protest Reebok for their affiliation with the rapper, Ross tweeted: "I dont condone rape. Apologies for the #lyric interpreted as rape. #BOSS."
Two hours later he added: "Apologies to my many business partners, who would never promote violence against women. @ReebokClassics @ultraviolet."
UltaViolet issued the following response to the news that Reebok was severing their endorsement ties with the rapper:
"We are thrilled to hear that Reebok is joining the fight against rape culture and dropping Rick Ross. This is a huge victory for women, for the 526 survivors of rape who were brave enough to publicly confront rape culture, and for the nearly 100,000 UltraViolet members who have poured their hearts and time into this campaign. This sends a strong message that rapping about drugging and raping an unconscious woman is not only morally wrong, but has real consequences. After Steubenville, Americans expect and demand better. Thank you Reebok for taking a stand."
· Reebok Gives Rapper the Boot [TMZ]