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Robert De Niro blames MENA disasters on Trump

Robert De Niro attends the 92nd Annual Academy Awards at Hollywood and Highland on 9 February 2020 in Hollywood, California. [Amy Sussman/Getty Images]
Robert De Niro attends the 92nd Annual Academy Awards at Hollywood and Highland on 9 February 2020 in Hollywood, California. [Amy Sussman/Getty Images]

Prominent Hollywood actor Robert De Niro has claimed US President Donald Trump is to blame for all the disasters in the Middle East in an interview with Al-Quds Al-Arabi.

De Niro reportedly told Al-Quds Al-Arabi he believed the US president was behind all the region's disasters, including the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

The reporter, Husam Sam Asi, according to the article, reminded De Niro that problems existed in the Middle East before Trump's presidency, but the argument fell on deaf ears.

Instead, Asi claims he presented De Niro with a case study of an Egyptian-born taxi driver in New York who, despite the US president's anti-Muslim rhetoric and racism, was a Trump supporter.

The Egyptian immigrant, Asi writes, said life under Trump's presidency had allowed his family to live in government housing without significant rent hikes; provided constant employment; and meant he could afford to send two of his children to university.

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De Niro reportedly reacted angrily to Asi's story, asking to speak off camera to tell the reporter, "Trump is cheating these people with his lies and manipulating their feelings".

The Hollywood actor has long publicly condemned Trump and used his fame to canvas against the US president.

Before Trump's election in 2016, De Niro termed the presidential hopeful "blatantly stupid [and] … a mutt who doesn't know what he's talking about" in a celebrity-led campaign encouraging Americans to vote.

In 2018, the actor received a standing ovation at the Tony awards for cursing the US president. Trump responded to De Niro's insults on Twitter, claiming the actor was "punch-drunk" after receiving "too many shots to the head by real boxers in movies".

While speaking to the Guardian in January, De Niro termed Trump a "real racist" and a "white supremacist". Later in the interview, De Niro compared the US president to some of history's worst fascists, Hitler and Mussolini.

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