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Elle Macpherson in rhino horn row

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ElleAustralian supermodel Elle Macpherson has got herself into a spot of bother by implying in a recent interview that she used powdered rhino horn as a beauty therapy, even though the animal is endangered. Animal welfare groups have reportedly reacted angrily, prompting her to issue a statement clarifying that her remarks, made in the shortened Twitter format, were tongue-in-cheek.

“While I’m happy that the critical issue of protecting endangered species is back in the headlines, I am a but surprised that it is based on my use of herbal and homeopathic medicine,” she said in a statement given to Reuters.

“I was Twittering with a Times journalist about the taste of herbal medicines and made a flippant comment inferring I had tasted rhino horn. To be clear, I have never knowingly consumed or encouraged consumption of any products derived from endangered species. The idea is abhorrent to me. While I love my herbal and Chinese remedies I would never put my health over the survival of a species. I guess this is one of the pitfalls of 140 character journalism.”

She went on to explain that four out of five species of rhino are under immediate threat, mainly due to poaching for their horns. “Killing rhinos because some people think its horn is an aphrodisiac is beyond appalling.”

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