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Wednesday 13th November 2019

Axed Emmerdale actress Shila Iqbal ends social media silence with post about racist tweets

She's thanked those who have supported her during "this difficult time"

Former soap star Shila Iqbal has issued a grovelling apology for the offensive tweets that cost her her job.

The ex Emmerdale actress, 24, was dumped from the ITV soap two weeks ago after social media posts said to have contained the N-word and gay slurs were unearthed.

It is believed the Aiesha Richards performer's public messages were created when she was in college in 2013.

Appearing on This Morning yesterday, Shila claimed the tweets did not contain any "malicious intent" and were meant to be "banter" with her friends.

Shila was axed from Emmerdale earlier this month (Credit: Instagram @shila_iqbal)

Read more: Is Emmerdale's new mystery man Nate Robinson a MENACE?

Later in the evening, she shared a clip of her time on the sofa opposite Phillip Schofield and Holly Willoughby on Instagram, admitted she had been "utterly wrong" and thanked those who have supported her during "this difficult time".

It was the first time she had posted on the photo-sharing site since the scandal broke.

Even if I was having a conversation with friends and had no malice behind the tweets, the now mature and wiser me knows that it was utterly wrong of me to do so.

Her lengthy Insta caption read: "I want to say I am truly sorry to anyone who I have hurt or offended with the tweets I sent as a silly, uneducated teenager.

"Please know I do not condone the language I used 6/7 years ago."

It is thought she was at college when she wrote the tweets (Credit: Instagram @shila_iqbal)

Read more: Good Morning Britain presenter pays touching tribute to Piers Morgan

Suggesting there was 'context' to her words, she added: "Even if I was having a conversation with friends and had no malice behind the tweets, the now mature and wiser me knows that it was utterly wrong of me to do so."

Shila continued: "Also, thank you so much to everyone who has supported me through this difficult time. Thank you to all you wonderful strangers who have reached out and sent messages of support, it means so much ❤️.

"Thank you This Morning and thank you Phil & Holly ❤️."

Many of the comments left on the image by her followers seemed to be supportive.

Her Emmerdale character has been written out of the soap (Credit: Instagram @shila_iqbal)

"I agree with what you said. I understand why they did it but it's completely unfair," claimed one. 

"If society hasn't figured out that words aren't offensive but the intent and context behind the words are, then we're all going down with you," suggested another.

And a third remarked: "Stay strong. I really feel for you. You've been treated so unfairly. You sounded so fragile in your interview."

However, many of This Morning's viewers did not seem the share the same opinions as Shila’s social media followers, calling on her to 'stop playing the victim' and arguing that she was still an adult when she posted the tweets.

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