The Archbishop of Canterbury, leader of the world's Anglicans, has warned against demonising gay people.

Dr Rowan Williams was commenting on the controversy surrounding last week's attack by an Anglican preacher on homosexuals at the funeral of leading Ugandan gay rights activist David Kato.

The Archbishop made his remarks after a six day Anglican summit in Dublin.

Wednesday's murder of Mr Kato in Uganda followed his successful court action against a newspaper for inciting hatred against gays.

The subsequent comments at his funeral by an Anglican preacher that gays should abandon what they were doing caused uproar among the congregation which included many of Mr Kato's gay friends.

Today, Dr Williams echoed his condemnations of the affair and warned about the power of words in such controversies.

The Archbishop was speaking at the end of a six-day meeting of two dozen leading Anglicans in the Catholic-run Eammaus retreat house in north Dublin.

Seven of their brother bishops boycotted the gathering in protest against the presence of Bishop Katherine Jefferts Schori, the American Primate who approves the ordination of homosexual bishops and the blessing of gay unions.

The Primate of Uganda also boycotted this Dublin summit and there is little prospect that he or the six others will attend such gatherings in the near future.

But the organisers say that this does not affect their loyalty to the Anglican church.