On Monday, the BBC aired Meet IS Brides, a Panorama episode presented by journalist Stacey Dooley. The television documentary followed Dooley as she visited camps in northern Syria and spoke to women who left their own countries to join the so-called Islamic State (IS).
In one of the doc's scenes, the host mistakenly refers to the "Tawheed" - an Islamic prayer sign that sees people raise their index finger to symbolize the unity and uniqueness of God - as an "IS salute." The mistake led to intense backlash among Muslim communities worldwide.
Amid the criticism, the BBC issued an apology over the matter. In a statement published earlier this week, a spokesman for the broadcasting company said:
"We wrongly described a gesture made by women filmed in a Kurdish controlled detention camp in northern Syria as an 'IS salute.' While Isis have attempted to adopt this for their own propaganda purposes, for accuracy we should have been clear that many people of Muslim faith use this gesture to signify the oneness of Allah."
"We apologize for this error and have removed this description from the footage," the statement added.
Dooley's comment has been cut out of the program
The scene capturing the erroneous statement Dooley made to describe women raising their fingers in the air has since been cut from the program.
Muslims around the world have condemned the TV presenter for making the remark, which feeds the incorrect narrative that the so-called Islamic state and its actions represent Islam.
Yes, the terrorist group has used the "Tawheed" gesture in their propaganda videos and images but that doesn't make it "their salute," as Dooley implied.
In Islam, the raised index finger is a symbol used by Muslims to refer to the oneness of God. The gesture is part of Islamic prayer and is used by Muslims around the world.
Though the BBC did apologize over Dooley's statement, their response did little to end the controversy. Many continue to discuss the matter online and are calling on a personal apology from Dooley herself.