Egyptian media reported Sunday that a Dutch journalist was raped by several men in Cairo's Tahrir Square a
few days ago.
Dina Zakaria, a journalist reporting for the "Egypt
25" news channel affiliated with the January 25 revolution, shared the incident on her Facebook
page Sunday: "A Dutch journalist in Tahrir was raped by men who dub themselves revolutionists. Her condition is severe and she is hospitalized."
Meanwhile, a state hospital issued a statement that the journalist was admitted after being raped by five men several days ago. She underwent surgery and has been released. It was also reported that Egypt's Prosecutor General Talaat Abdallah ordered his staff to go to the hospital to hear the woman's story and reveal the circumstances behind the violent attack.
Protests in Tahrir Square (Photo: AP)
Egyptian women face sexual harassment and assaults on a daily basis. During and after the revolution, there have been a number of case of foreign reporters who were sexually assaulted, such as Sonia Dridi and Lara Logan.
Sexual harassment is not new within the conservative Egyptian society, yet the extent of this phenomenon has grown and become more violent and visible. The Egyptian law defines assault as a crime, but not sexual assault.
The United Nations
claimed last month that it holds some 25 sexual assault reports that occurred in Tahrir Square, the center of the protest, in one week in the beginning of the year. The organization dedicated to preventing sexual assaults, whose activists patrolled Tahrir Square, reported 19 assaults on January 25 alone – the second anniversary of the uprising against Hosni Mubarak. Among the reports was also a case of a girl who was raped by a sharp instrument.
According to a report by the UN, the Cairo Demographic Center and Egypt's Institute of National Planning, more than 99% of the hundreds of Egyptian women who participated in the study reported some kind of sexual harassment or assault, from verbal abuse to rape. The women came from seven of Egypt's 27 provinces.
The violence against women comes in many forms in post-Mubarak Egypt. Egyptian media reported last weekend that a young teacher filed for divorce from her husband due to beatings attributable to political differences between the two, according to her.
The woman, 31, claimed that her husband, an avid supporter of President Mohammed Morsi,
beats her because she criticizes the president and even mocks him. The woman claimed in her appeal to the Cairo Family Court that the frequency of the fighting between her and her husband has increased since Morsi took office. The two have been married for 12 years.
"He's so stubborn and is unwilling to give up his blind support of Morsi," the woman was quoted as saying, "I cannot stand life with him anymore so I decided to go to court." The husband, a public servant, claimed that the situation is not so bad and called his wife "provocative". "She mocks his decisions and listens to poisonous TV channels that spread lies about him," it was claimed.
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