(WXIA) -- Dunkin Donuts was left red-faced after an ad for the chain's Thailand restaurants showed a smiling woman in blackface makeup.
The Thailand ad was for the chain's new chocolate-flavored "Charcoal Donut" and featured an image reminiscent of 19th and early 20th century American stereotypes for black people that are now considered offensive symbols of a racist era.
The American-based Dunkin Donuts offered an apology via Twitter after a social media backlash against the chain.
Dunkin' Donuts' CEO in Thailand, Nadim Salhani, dismissed the criticism as "paranoid American thinking" and called it "absolutely ridiculous."
(The Assocated Press contributed to this report.)