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Hollywood Star Counters Islamophobia

DUBAI – American Hollywood star Will Smith used his Middle East tour which kicked off on Sunday, August 7, to counter an increasingly anti-Muslim climate surrounding the US presidential race and promote mutual understanding.

“In terms of Islamophobia in America, for me that’s why it’s important to show up,” he said, AP reported on Sunday, August 7.

Smith kicked off his tour in Dubai to promote his new movie “Suicide Squad”.

The star, who plays the sharpshooter Deadshot in the film, said he’s having fun and tweeting pictures of his time in Dubai, showing that “Hey, it doesn’t look like they hate me, does it?”

He also hinted at the upcoming US presidential elections, saying he believes it’s important “to speak out about the insanity” surrounding the race.

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During the past months, Donald Trump has encouraged a wave of anti-Muslim sentiment in the United States, from a complete ban of Muslims to “extreme vetting” in a CBS News interview last month.

In December, the New York business mogul proposed banning all Muslims from American territory “until our country’s representatives can figure out what is going on.”

“I think Islam hates us,” Trump told CNN in an interview in March.

Muslims make up 1% of America’s 322 million population, according to Pew Research center.

Facing growing attacks on Muslims, CAIR has launched a new website,, to monitor and challenge the growing anti-Muslim bigotry.

In 2014, CAIR published “Know Your Rights and Responsibilities” pocket guide that tells American Muslims to report any actual knowledge of criminal activity without being asked by law enforcement authorities.

“As painful as it is to hear Donald Trump talk and as embarrassing as it is as an American to hear him talk, I think it’s good,” Smith said.

“We get to know who people are and now we get to cleanse it out of our country.”