Egypt Watch

Egypt journalist sexually harassed in prison


July 10, 2019

On Tuesday Egyptian human rights activist Abeer Hisham Mohammed Al-Safti filed a complaint with the Public Prosecutor’s Office after being sexually harassed inside Al-Qanater Prison whilst her detention was being renewed.

Director of the Committee for Justice, Ahmed Mefreh, confirmed that many detainees in Egyptian prisons are subject to sexual harassment by security forces during so-called inspections.

In a tweet Mefreh said: “Abir filed a sexual harassment complaint today with the General Prosecutor’s office. The latter moved to maintain Abir’s detention without investigation of the harassment claim.”

According to the Egyptian Coordination for Rights and Freedoms, an Egyptian civil society organisation, Abeer Al-Safti told her lawyer that she was sexually assaulted as she was searched following her deportation from the police station to Al-Qanater Prison.

The State Security Prosecution decided to renew Al-Safti’s detention for 15 days under Case No. 674 of 2019, known as the “referendum detainees,” who are accused of “joining a group established contrary to the provisions of the law and the constitution” and who “misuse their accounts on social networking sites.”

Security forces arrested Al-Safti last April. A policeman ambushed the taxi she was in, which was taking her to a committee meeting on the constitutional amendments.