U.S. Marines from the 2nd Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment, patrol in a Humvee in Ramadi, Iraq, Oct. 25, 2004. (AP Photo)

The U.S. Army has issued an apology for a policy that approved use of the word “Negro” to refer to its Black service members and has dropped the term from the document, according to news reports.

“The U.S. Army fully recognized, and promptly acted, to remove outdated language in Army Regulation 600-20 as soon as it was brought to our attention,” an Army spokesman said in a statement cited by CNN. “We apologize to anyone we offended.”

Army Regulation 600-20, also called Army Command Policy, outlines personnel standards and policies. In a section on equal opportunity, the policy stated that “terms such as ‘Haitian’ or ‘Negro’ can be used in addition to ‘Black’ or ‘African American’” to describe “a person having origins in any of the black racial groups of Africa.”

Though Pentagon officials did not say when the outdated language first appeared in the document, it appeared to be many years ago, reported The Associated Press. It was removed on Nov. 7, however, two days after CNN first reported on the regulation.

“The Army takes pride in sustaining a culture where all personnel are treated with dignity and respect and not discriminated against based on race, color, religion, gender and national origin,” Lt. Col. S. Justin Platt, an Army spokesman, told CNN Nov. 5.

The use of the term “Negro” to describe American of African descent faded from use—and acceptance—during the Civil Rights Movement, though not all Blacks see it as an affront.

Bishop Leon McClain, a member of the National Association for Black Veterans, said he was called “Negro” when he joined the Army as a teenager in 1954. “Didn’t bother me then, doesn’t bother me now. I wasn’t always treated with respect, but you got to look forward, not back, and you can’t pay ignorance any mind,” he told the Daily News.

“If Martin Luther King associated himself with the Negro race, it’s all right with me,” he added. “But we’re not going back to working in any cotton fields, I can tell you that.