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Gymnast Smith sorry for video ‘mocking’ Islam

Louis Smith has published an apology after a video leaked online suggested he was mocking Islam.

The 27-year-old Olympic gymnast wrote he was “deeply sorry” for “deep offence” caused by the footage and his “thoughtless actions”.

The film appears to show Louis, with fellow gymnast Luke Carson, laughing while pretending to pray and shouting “Allahu Akbar”.

The Islamic phrase means “God is the greatest” in Arabic.

Reaction to the footage has been largely negative, with some calling him a racist for appearing to mock a religion.

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Screengrabs showing tweets sent from Luke Carson, 26, apologising are being shared, but he has since made his tweets private.

Newsbeat has contacted representatives for both Luke Carson and Louis Smith and is awaiting responses.

Luke Carson

British Gymnastics has announced it will be “investigating” the incident.

The UK governing body for the sport of gymnastics said: “British Gymnastics does not condone the mocking of any faith or religion and is appalled by such behaviours.

“Gymnastics is an inclusive sport and we are proud of members who portray the inclusive values of British Gymnastics.

“Members who break our code of conduct can face suspension or expulsion from our organisation. We will be investigating the behaviours reported.”

Louis Smith has represented Team GB in the past three Olympic Games and won Strictly Come Dancing in 2012.

Luke Carson announced last year his retirement from gymnastics due to injury.

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Article source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/newsbeat/articles/37604781