Louis Smith: I’ve had death threats for mocking Islam
Olympic medal-winning gymnast Louis Smith has told BBC 5 live that he's had death threats “every day” since a video was leaked showing him mocking Islamic prayers.
Talking to Emma Barnett, he admitted that he and fellow gymnast Luke Carson were drunk when they filmed the late-night video, which started with singing songs from the musical Aladdin after a wedding, and ended up with them using a rug to imitate the Muslim call to prayer.
He said he is "very ashamed of my actions", which was a "very silly thing to do", and admitted that he is "quite ignorant to religion in general…. I think what I did was very offensive especially to the Muslim community".
Louis is now planning to visit a mosque and find out more about the Muslim faith to "rebuild some bridges".
He also said that he finds it "incredibly hard" being a role model, and the "hardest thing is letting people down who looked up to me".
Louis said that he will be interviewed about what happened by British Gymnastics on Monday and the matter will then go to a disciplinary hearing. He said that he does not want to retire from the sport.
“I was in the wrong and whatever the decision I'm the one who's going to have to live with it,” he said.