Riz Ahmed says ‘scary to be Muslim right now’, narrates incident

Washington: Actor Riz Ahmed has claimed he was racially profiled on a flight in April, which caused him to miss a ‘Star Wars’ celebration convention in Chicago. The actor also opened up about the discrimination he faces because of his race, saying the current times are “super scary”.

Ahmed made his comments last week at the CAA Amplify conference, reported Fox News.

Homeland Security stopped him from boarding a flight in April, causing him to miss a scheduled appearance at the Windy City’s Star Wars Celebration.

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The ‘Star Wars’ actor described being checked for explosives and questioned at an airport in the United States,
claiming that it wasn’t a rare occurrence for him and he is frequently stopped and searched when he travels.

“With all my privilege and profile, I often wonder if this is going to be the year they round us up, if this is the year they’re going to put Trump’s Muslim registry into action, if this is going to be the year they ship us all off,” he told the crowd.

He also pointed out that the success of other A-list Muslim stars hasn’t helped the plight of other Muslim people in the US.

“Hasan Minhaj could win a Peabody, I could win an Emmy, Ibtihaj Muhammad could win the Olympics, but some of these obstacles are systemic, and we can’t really face them alone,” he said.

“We need your help. I’m basically here to ask for your help. Because it’s really scary to be a Muslim right now. Super scary,” he added.

Ahmed also spoke about Uighur Muslims being detained in China and the influence of nationalism on Brexit, adding, “I think lives are quite literally at stake here. The representation of Muslims on screen, that feeds the policies that get enacted, the people that get killed, the countries that get invaded.”

The ‘Venom’ star previously told Stephen Colbert that he’s hoping to change stereotypes through his work, especially with American drama miniseries ‘The Night Of’, in which he played a Pakistani-American college student accused of murder.

‘When I was growing up, I felt like I had to qualify it and say I’m British-Pakistani. But now, in this day and age, I feel like this is what British looks like me. It looks like me, like Idris Elba. And hopefully, through Nasir Khan, people will see that’s what American can look like as well,” Ahmed said on ‘The Late Show’ in August 2016.


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