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"None of the story is factually true" George Clooney hits back at 'irresponsible' story on his fiancée

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George Clooney has issued a strongly-worded statement against the Daily Mail after the newspaper published a story saying his future mother-in-law, Baria Alamuddin, is against his forthcoming marriage to international human rights lawyer, Amal Alamuddin, for religious reasons.

In Clooney's open letter published on USA Today, the actor, 53, refutes the Daily Mail's story that says Baria Alamuddin, a journalist in the Middle East and UK, thinks her daughter "can do better" than Clooney and that she's been telling friends in Beirut she wants her daughter to marry into the family's Druze religion.

"The Daily Mail has printed a completely fabricated story about my fiancée's mother opposing our marriage for religious reasons," writes Clooney.

"I seldom respond to tabloids, unless it involves someone else and their safety or well being," continues the star.

"If they fabricate stories of Amal being pregnant, or that the marriage will take place on the set of Downton Abbey, or that I'm running for office, or any number of idiotic stories that they sit at their computers and invent, I don't care."

"But this lie involves larger issues. The irresponsibility, in this day and age, to exploit religious differences where none exist, is at the very least negligent and more appropriately dangerous...The idea that someone would inflame any part of that world for the sole reason of selling papers should be criminal."

George Clooney and Amal Alamuddin in London in October 2013

The actor has also said Amal's mother "is not Druze" and that "she has not been to Beirut since Amal and I have been dating".

Since the Daily Mail's article published on 7 July, an online version of the story has been amended though claims that Amal's mother against the marriage because it is outside of the Druze sect still remain.

USA Today reports that the Daily Mail "did not respond to requests for comment".

Amal 's mother Baria Alamuddin in a BBC World interview on Syrian politics in 2010

Amal Alamuddin and Clooney were first spotted together in London last October and engagement rumours bubbled in April when the lawyer was spotted wearing a diamond ring on her engagement finger.

However Alamuddin's law firm, Doughty Street Chambers, confirmed her engagement to the A-lister in April when they released a statement congratulating the couple.

At the time, Clooney's publicist, Stan Rosenfield, issued a short statement saying, "I don't comment on my client's personal life".

Clooney has been married once to actress Talia Balsam, from 1989 to 1993. He split from girlfriend Stacy Keibler in 2013.

Read George Clooney's statement to the Daily Mail in full below:

"I want to speak to the irresponsibility of Monday's Daily Mail report. I seldom respond to tabloids, unless it involves someone else and their safety or well being. The Daily Mail has printed a completely fabricated story about my fiancée's mother opposing our marriage for religious reasons. It says Amal's mother has been telling "half of Beirut" that she's against the wedding. It says they joke about traditions in the Druze religion that end up with the death of the bride.

Let me repeat that: the death of the bride.

First of all, none of the story is factually true. Amal's mother is not Druze. She has not been to Beirut since Amal and I have been dating, and she is in no way against the marriage — but none of that is the issue. I'm, of course, used to the Daily Mail making up stories — they do it several times a week — and I don't care. If they fabricate stories of Amal being pregnant, or that the marriage will take place on the set of Downton Abbey, or that I'm running for office, or any number of idiotic stories that they sit at their computers and invent, I don't care.

But this lie involves larger issues. The irresponsibility, in this day and age, to exploit religious differences where none exist, is at the very least negligent and more appropriately dangerous. We have family members all over the world, and the idea that someone would inflame any part of that world for the sole reason of selling papers should be criminal.

I'm the son of a newsman; I accept the idea that freedom of speech can be an inconvenience to my private life from time to time, but this story, like so many others, is picked up by hundreds of other outlets citing the Daily Mail as their source, including Boston.com, New York Daily News, Gulf News, Emirates 24/7 and so on.

The Daily Mail, more than any other organization that calls itself news, has proved time and time again that facts make no difference in the articles they make up. And when they put my family and my friends in harm's way, they cross far beyond just a laughable tabloid and into the arena of inciting violence.

They must be so very proud."

(Images: Rex Features, Getty)

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