Lily Allen slams racism accusations
Lily Allen has hit back at accusations of racism over her video for comeback single Hard Out Here.
The video sees the 28-year-old mother-of-two performing with scantily-clad dancers "twerking" in a spoof of misogynistic pop culture as she sings about women's ongoing battle for equality.
But some critics have branded the video racist for featuring predominantly black dancers.
Lily responded on Twitter saying: "If anyone thinks for a second that I requested specific ethnicities for the video, they're wrong.
"If anyone thinks that after asking the girls to audition, I was going to send any of them away because of the colour of their skin, they're wrong."
She went on: "The message is clear. Whilst I don't want to offend anyone. I do strive to provoke thought and conversation. The video is meant to be a lighthearted satirical video that deals with objectification of women within modern pop culture. It has nothing to do with race, at all."
Lily added: "If I could dance like the ladies can, it would have been my arse on your screens; I actually rehearsed for two weeks trying to perfect my twerk, but failed miserably.
"If I was a little braver, I would have been wearing a bikini too, but I do not and I have chronic cellulite, which nobody wants to see. What I'm trying to say is that me being covered up has nothing to do with me wanting to disassociate myself from the girls, it has more to do with my own insecurities and I just wanted to feel as comfortable as possible on the shoot day.
"I'm not going to apologise because I think that would imply that I'm guilty of something, but I promise you this, in no way do I feel superior to anyone, except paedophiles, rapists, murderers etc, and I would not only be surprised but deeply saddened if I thought anyone came away from that video feeling taken advantage of, or compromised in any way."
The song is Lily's first single since she stepped back from the music world in 2009 and had two daughters - Ethel and Marnie - with her husband Sam Cooper.