Some members call for separating men and women during protests to prevent sexual harassment, blaming women for subjecting themselves to rape.
The Shura Council Human Rights Committee addressed on Monday the recent wave of sexual harassment proliferating during mass protests, calling for specifying places of protest for females.
“Women should not mingle with men during protests,” said Reda Al-Hefnawy, Freedom and Justice Party (FJP) member. “How can the Ministry of Interior be tasked with protecting a lady who stands among a group of men?”
Adel Afifi, a prominent board member of the Salafi Party Al-Asala, blamed women for the sexual harassment phenomenon. “A woman who joins protests among thugs and street inhabitants should protect herself before asking the Ministry of Interior to offer her protection,” Afifi said, adding that police officers are incapable of protecting themselves. (...)
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“What came out of the Shura Council today is horrible,” said Sally Zohney, a women’s rights activist.
“Those statements are inhumane, to say the least.”
Zohney condemned the council members’ trial blaming the victim for the attacks instead of offering them help. “In facing social problems regarding assaults on women, the easy way out is always to separate them [the women] from the men,” Zohney said. “Yet, it’s disastrous to hear such solutions coming out of the Shura Council.”