Zayn Malik of the teen heartthrob boy band One Direction has revealed that the reason he quit Twitter earlier this year was that he’d been branded a terrorist.
“The ‘Live While We’re Young’ singer took a hiatus from the social networking site in August when his loved ones became distressed about the racially-motivated messages,” reports Digital Spy.
Malik (19) – born to a British mother and a British Pakistani father – says that fellow tweeters said “nasty things like I’m a terrorist. How can you justify that? How can you call me that and get away with it?”
Meanwhile, an American radio presenter cut short an interview with Malik after his label issued a series of rules for the interview, including banned questions.
Among questions they didn’t want the presenter on Hot 89.9 to ask were “What’s your celebrity crush?” and “Who came up with the name One Direction?”
“OK,” said the presenter after asking no questions, “well that’s about going to do it. Thank you for taking the time for us today and I wish you continued success in the future.”
Malik’s fellow One Direction member, Liam Payne (also 19), has admitted he’s worried about how Malik is coping with fame.
Digital Spy quotes Payne as saying: “The only person I really worry about is Zayn, because I don’t think he’s quite accustomed to all of this. He’s had a terrible time on Twitter.
“I don’t think he’s quite adjusted to it yet. I’m sure he’ll get it. He’s my best mate. I’ve got to look out for him. It’s mad to think I didn’t know [One Direction] two years ago and now they’re my best mates.”