Police in Manchester, England, are apologizing for a mock terror attack in which a fake Muslim terrorist yelled "Allahu Akbar," which means "God is great" in Arabic, on May 9 (video below).
About 800 volunteers took part in the realistic exercise, notes the BBC News.
The fake terrorist, dressed in black, went into a shopping mall food court, set off a fake bomb and pretended to fire a gun.
Volunteers hit the floor. Some of the volunteers were made up in blood as if they had been seriously inured, while others yelled out in pain.
Using a fake Muslim terrorist and the words "Allahu Akbar" offended some.
"We need to move away from stereotypes if we want to achieve real learning," Manchester peace activist Dr. Erinma Bell said. "A terrorist can be anyone."
Assistant chief constable Garry Shewann said in a statement released by the Greater Manchester Police:
"The scenario for this exercise is based on an attack by an extremist Daesh-style organization and the scenario writers have centered the circumstances around previous similar attacks of this nature, mirroring details of past events to make the situation as real life as possible for all of those involved.
"However, on reflection we acknowledge that it was unacceptable to use this religious phrase immediately before the mock suicide bombing, which so vocally linked this exercise with Islam. We recognize and apologize for the offense that this has caused."
Greater Manchester Police and Crime Commissioner Tony Lloyd stated:
"It is frustrating the operation has been marred by the ill-judged, unnecessary and unacceptable decision by organizers to have those playing the parts of terrorists to shout 'Allahu Akbar' before setting off their fake bombs.
"It didn't add anything to the event, but has the potential to undermine the great community relations we have in Greater Manchester."
Some people on Twitter were upset by the apologies, International Business Times reports:
"Why apologize? This is a common element of #Islamist #terror attacks, so realistic I'd say."
"No need for an apology, or pandering to the easily offended. Just keep up the good work protecting Greater Manchester."