Great Britain

Airline boss criticised after claiming terrorists will 'generally be males of Muslim persuasion'

Airline boss Michael O'Leary has said terrorists "will generally be males of a Muslim persuasion".

The 58-year-old chief executive of Ryanair, which operates a number of routes out of Leeds Bradford Airport, said that families with young children should be waved through airport security because there was "virtually" zero chance of them being bombers.

"Who are the bombers? They are going to be single males travelling on their own," he said.

"If you are travelling with a family of kids, on you go; the chances you are going to blow them all up is zero."

He added: "You can't say stuff, because it's racism, but it will generally be males of a Muslim persuasion. Thirty years ago it was the Irish.

"If that is where the threat is coming from, deal with the threat."

Labour MP Khalid Mahmood said Mr O'Leary was "encouraging racism".

"If he can tell me what colour Muslims are then I'd be very happy to learn from him - you can't judge a book by its cover," he told the Times.

He added: "In Germany this week a white person killed eight people. Should we profile white people to see if they're being fascists?

"He's being very blinkered and is actually encouraging racism."

Mr O'Leary's remarks come the day after a white female Muslim convert admitted plotting a suicide bomb attack on St Paul's Cathedral in London.

Safiyya Amira Shaikh, 36, was born Michelle Ramsden but converted to Islam in 2007 and is believed to have become radicalised in 2015 after following extremists online.

The airline chief is no stranger to controversial remarks - particularly his murderous intentions towards environmentalists.

He once said: "The best thing you can do with environmentalists is shoot them."

Mr O'Leary also believes travel agents deserve the same treatment, saying once: "Screw the travel agents.

"Take the f***ers out and shoot them. What have they done for passengers over the years?"

He famously proposed coin-operated toilets on flights and dressed up as the pope to launch Ryanair's new route from Dublin to Rome

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