ITV apologise for 'offensive' Ant and Dec Saturday Night Takeaway sketch
2 March 2020, 10:52 | Updated: 2 March 2020, 12:52
The presenting duo wore historical 'Rising Sun' Japanese flags during Anne-Marie's performance.
ITV have apologised for an 'offensive' Saturday Night Takeaway sketch that saw Ant McPartlin and Declan Donnelly wear bandanas sporting what appeared to be the 'Rising Sun' Japanese flag.
The Rising Sun symbol was flown during Japan's imperialist expansion in the Second World War, and is viewed as deeply offensive in parts of East Asia - particularly South Korea.
The presenting duo were seem messing around while Anne-Marie performed a rendition of Ciao Adios.
ITV have now apologised, and revealed that they are taking steps to edit out the offensive footage on the ITV Hub.
They said in a statement: "We apologise for any offence caused during the End of the Show Show by the costumes worn.
"This was clearly unintended and we have taken steps to re-edit that part of the episode for the Hub and for repeat broadcasts."
Anne-Marie also issued a statement on Twitter, saying: "I sincerely apologise to all those who were affected and hurt by my appearance last night on a UK TV.
"I want you to know that I had nothing to do with the costumes on this sketch.
"Unfortunately education on this part of the history wasn't done and I am also hurt by the pain this signifies for so many people.
"I am truly sorry and I promise you that this will not happen again.
"Our team is talking to the TV station, working on taking down the footage so that it does not cause any more pain."