Veteran Hollywood actor Susan Sarandon has issued an apology after saying at a pro-Palestine rally that people feeling afraid of being Jewish at this time were "getting a taste of what it feels like to be a Muslim in this country, so often subjected to violence".
The Academy Award-winning actor's comments, made in response to the Israel-Hamas conflict at a pro-Palestinian rally last month, drew widespread criticism.
In a statement posted to Instagram Friday night, Sarandon said she had been trying to communicate her concern for rising hate crimes.
“This phrasing was a terrible mistake as it implies that until recently Jews have been strangers to persecution, when the opposite is true. As we all know, from centuries of oppression and genocide in Europe, to the Tree of Life shooting in Pittsburgh, PA... Jews have long been familiar with discrimination and religious violence which continues to this day," the actor said.
“I deeply regret diminishing this reality and hurting people with this comment. It was my intent to show solidarity in the struggle against bigotry of all kinds, and I am sorry I failed to do so," Sarandon added.
Following her remarks at the November 17 rally in New York City, Sarandon was dropped by United Talent Agency (UTA), where she'd been a client since 2014.
The Israel-Hamas conflict began after the October 7 attack by Hamas and other militants, who killed about 1,200 people, mostly civilians, in southern Israel and took around 240 people captive.
Israel pounded targets in the southern Gaza Strip on Saturday after a weeklong truce with Hamas and giving rise to renewed concerns about civilian casualties.