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Image of Malala being shot used in mattress ad campaign

The advert for an Indian mattress company contains images of Malala being shot. Credit: © Ogilvy / SWNS.com

An advertising agency has caused outrage after creating a promotion for a mattress company using a cartoon of heroine Malala Yousafzai being shot in the face.

The poster campaign - created by multinational company Ogilvy - shows a series of cartoons of the young schoolgirl being shot, in hospital, falling onto a mattress and then returning to health, under the slogan 'Bounce Back'.

ITV News has taken the decision not to show the advertisement in full.

Indian bedding company Kurl-On commissioned a series of three poster adverts from the multinational design agency, which was founded by Briton David Ogilvy.

The other two poster adverts in the series show Gandhi leaving his career as a barrister to become a peace activist, and Steve Jobs bouncing back after he was kicked out of Apple.

An advert in the series includes the image of Ghandi. Credit: © Ogilvy / SWNS.com

We do not believe that getting shot in the face was the defining moment in this brave young 14-year-old's life - it was her courage and determination to rise from hopeless circumstances.

We believe that her's is a breathtakingly inspiring story and while all of us do not have the raw courage or moral fiber to do what she did, we can try to pay a tribute to her by any means available to us.

In this case, the means happened to be an advertising campaign. If we were architects, we would erect a monument in her honour.

– A representative from Ogilvy
The poster campaign using the image of Steve Jobs. Credit: © Ogilvy / SWNS.com

The advert has been criticised by industry experts, including Canadian advertising executive Tom Megginson.

He said: "14-year-olds getting shot in the face by terrorists are appropriate content for mattress ads now? I am ashamed to be in the same industry as these ad people."

Malala's representatives deemed the adverts "distasteful" but decided not to comment further.

Pakistani-born Malala was shot in the face on a school bus by an extremist Taliban gunman because she wanted to receive an education, in a horrific crime that shocked the world.

Malala, now 16, was rushed to Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham where she remarkably recovered from her injuries.

The young girl has since released her autobiography, and has received a string of humanitarian awards for her continued activism, including a coveted Nobel Peace Prize nomination.

Kurl-On claim to the world's largest manufacturers and distributors of mattresses and beds, and export their products to several countries including Britain.