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‘Jeopardy!’ producers say controversial question was mistake

In this image released by ABC, host Alex Trebec, left, appear with contestants, James Holzhauer, center, Ken Jennings and Brad Rutter, right, on the set of "Jeopardy! The Greatest of All Time," in Los Angeles. The all-time top Jeopardy! money winners; Rutter, Jennings and  Holzhauer, will compete in a rare prime-time edition of the TV quiz show which will air on consecutive nights beginning 8 p.m. EDT Tuesday. (Eric McCandless/ABC via AP)
In this image released by ABC, host Alex Trebec, left, appear with contestants, James Holzhauer, center, Ken Jennings and Brad Rutter, right, on the set of "Jeopardy! The Greatest of All Time," in Los Angeles. The all-time top Jeopardy! money winners; Rutter, Jennings and Holzhauer, will compete in a rare prime-time edition of the TV quiz show which will air on consecutive nights beginning 8 p.m. EDT Tuesday. (Eric McCandless/ABC via AP) (© 2019 American Broadcasting Companies, Inc. All rights reserved.)

NEW YORK, NY – Producers of the game show “Jeopardy!” have apologized for a clue that waded into political hot water involving Israeli control of the West Bank, saying an incorrect version of the show was sent to television stations.

A game shown last Friday asked contestants to identify the location of famous churches. One clue was “Built in 300s AD, the Church of the Nativity.”

Contestant Katie Needle answered, “What is Palestine?” and host Alex Trebek said she was incorrect. Her opponent, Jack McGuire, answered “what is Israel?” and was awarded $200.

The show was immediately attacked on social media. The church, in Bethlehem, is located in the West Bank. Some countries recognize that as the state of Palestine while others, including the United States, do not.

“Jeopardy!” producers, in a statement on the show's website Monday, said they realized the question was problematic and replaced it with another. The outcome of the game was not affected.

However, due to what “Jeopardy!" called human error, the uncorrected version of the pre-taped show was sent to television stations by mistake.

“We regret the error and we will make sure this never happens again,” the show said in a statement.