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Radisson drops Vikings sponsorship amid abuse cases

The Radisson hotel chain on Monday suspended its sponsorship deal with the Vikings over the National Football League's handling of domestic and child abuse cases.

Radisson has thus become the first company to distance itself from the NFL side over these issues. The Radisson sponsorship includes a banner placed behind speakers during the team's press conferences in Minneapolis.

The company made the announcement as Adrian Peterson's teammates, including fullback Jerome Fulton, welcomed the former MVP back to team headquarters after reports of child abuse involving his son came out in media.

"Radisson takes this matter very seriously, particularly in light of our long-standing commitment to the protection of children," the hotel chain said in a statement. "We are closely following the situation and, effective immediately, Radisson is suspending its limited sponsorship of the Minnesota Vikings while we evaluate the facts and circumstances."

Some former players, however, including former Vikings wide receiver Cris Carter and former New Orleans Saint linebacker Scott Fujita, have raised questions over the decision to allow to Peterson to rejoin the squad as the latter claims he is not a child abuse.

"I understand that this is a very difficult thing to handle," Vikings general manager Rick Spielman said. "But we also feel strongly as an organization that this is disciplining a child. Whether it's an abusive situation or not, or whether he went too far disciplining, we feel very strongly that that is the court's decision to make, but we also understand the seriousness of abusing children as well."

For his part, the 29-year-old Peterson also issued a statement through his agency rejecting reports that he was a child abuser. "I am someone that disciplined his child and did not intend to cause him any injury," the statement read. "No one can understand the hurt that I feel for my son and for the harm I caused him."