August 28, 2017 at 12:42 pm EDT | by Mariah Cooper
‘Nurse Jackie’ star Haaz Sleiman comes out as gay

A post shared by Haaz Sleiman (@haazsleiman) on

“Nurse Jackie” star Haaz Sleiman has publicly come out as gay after denying his sexuality for years.

Sleiman, 41, is known for playing gay character “Mo Mo” De La Cruz on “Nurse Jackie.” While his character was out and proud, Sleiman had kept his private life a secret until he posted a Facebook video announcing his sexuality.

“I am a gay, Muslim, Arab-American man. And I’m going to take it even further: Not only am I gay, but I’m also a bottom. Not only am I a bottom, but I’m also a total bottom which means I like it up you know where,” Sleiman says in the video.

He explains he chose to come out in response to a recent Human Rights Campaign study that found more LGBT people have been murdered in the U.S. so far this year than in 2016.

“If you ever come to me, to kill me just because I’m gay, I will destroy you,” Sleiman says. “I might be gay and I might be a nice guy, but don’t get it twisted, because I will fuck you up.”

In an Instagram post, Sleiman addressed why he told The Advocate he was straight and had a girlfriend in a 2009 interview. He blamed the interviewer for ambushing him with a personal question he had requested to not be asked.

“The advocate wanted to interview me. I told Showtime only on one condition, no personal questions. The advocate agreed. At the end of the half hour interview over the phone the idiot interviewer, whom I think was gay, asked me if was gay or straight (no personal questions)… I was so shocked. I froze. My body started shaking. And then I lied and said I was straight. Shame on gay people who are not kind to other gay people. He did that on purpose,” Sleiman writes.

Brandon Voss, the journalist who conducted the interview, wrote a piece for NewNowNext explaining that he never meant to offend Sleiman.

“My goal, however, was not to be unkind or shocking,” Voss writes. “When writing for LGBT publications, I respectfully interview LGBT people, straight people, and those who choose not to identify publicly. But because these celebrities are speaking to LGBT press, I do offer them an opportunity to identify if they so choose, with the end goal of celebrating and normalizing all sexual identities.”

Voss says he has since privately apologized to Sleiman and says Sleiman’s representatives didn’t inform him not to ask the question.

Watch Sleiman’s video below.

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