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Rio 2016 apologizes for using jaguar in Olympic torch relay after it was shot dead

Rio torch relay

LEOPOLDINA, BRAZIL - MAY 16: Detail shot of Olympic Torch during day 14 of the Olympic Flame torch relay on May 16 , 2016 in Leopoldina, Brazil. The Olympic torch will pass through 329 cities from all states from the north to the south of Brazil, until arriving in Rio de Janeiro on August 5, to lit the cauldron.

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Rio 2016 said Tuesday the use of a jaguar in an Olympic torch relay event on Monday was wrong, after the jaguar later escaped and was shot dead.

“We were wrong in permitting the Olympic torch, a symbol of peace and the coming together of people, to be exhibited next to a wild animal in chains,” the organizing committee said in Portuguese on social media. “This visual contradicts our beliefs and values. We are very sad with what transpired after the passing of the torch. We guarantee that we will not see another situation like this at the 2016 Rio Games.”

Video of the chained jaguar being near the Olympic flame and two torchbearers in Manaus, at an event with several armed guards, was published by Brazilian outlet O Globo.

After the ceremony, the jaguar reportedly escaped either a leash or a cage and attempted to attack a soldier, for which it was shot dead.

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