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Last Updated: Friday, 19 January 2007, 11:33 GMT
Anatomy star rebuked for gay jibe
Isaiah Washington
Washington plays Dr. Preston Burke in the hit medical drama
Grey's Anatomy actor Isaiah Washington has been reprimanded by TV network ABC for using an anti-gay term.

Washington uttered the offensive word backstage at this week's Golden Globes while discussing an on-set incident with co-star TR Knight last year.

He denied using the term, but in doing so repeated it. He later apologised, saying the word was "unacceptable in any context or circumstance".

"His actions are unacceptable and are being addressed," said ABC.

The network said in its statement it had "a longstanding policy to maintain respectful workplaces" for its employees, adding that it had "dealt with the original situation in October, and thought the issue resolved".

Scuffle

Washington, 43, was involved in a scuffle with co-star Patrick Dempsey on the set of Grey's Anatomy last year.

TR Knight and Isaiah Washington
The term was allegedly used to describe co-star TR Knight
During the incident, he allegedly used a derogatory term about co-star TR Knight.

"I sincerely regret my actions and the unfortunate use of words during the recent incident," he said at the time.

But, when reporters questioned him about the altercation on Monday, he landed himself in further trouble.

"No, I did not call TR a faggot," he said. "Never happened, never happened."

The widely-reported comment led to outcry in the US, where the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (Glaad) demanded an apology.

'No defence'

Washington conceded, issuing a statement on Thursday which read: " I can neither defend nor explain my behaviour.

"I can also no longer deny to myself that there are issues I obviously need to examine within my own soul, and I've asked for help."

Glaad president Neil Giuliano said he was encouraged by Washington's latest remarks.

"We are optimistic that it may mark a turning point in this deeply troubling situation," he said.

Grey's Anatomy, now in its third season, won the Golden Globe for best television drama at Monday's ceremony.

It is regularly the most-watched programme in the US, and is shown on Five and Living TV in the UK.


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