Low number of reported cases of sexual harassment in Cairo this Eid

Ahram Online, Monday 18 Jun 2018

Women and Sexual Harassment
File Photo: Girls walk past members of the riot police standing guard near a protest against sexual harassment in front of the opera house in Cairo June 14, 2014. (Photo: Reuters)

This year's Eid Al-Fitr has witnessed a relatively low number of reports of sexual harassment in Greater Cairo, Egypt's National Council for Women (NCW) announced on Monday.

The Eid Al-Fitr holiday, which follows the Islamic holy month of Ramadan, traditionally comes with a spike in reported cases of sexual harassment in public places.

In statements reported by the state-owned MENA news agency, the head of the NCW’s control room Nagla El-Adly said the council received 17 complaints of sexual harassment against women during the three-day Eid holiday, which ended on Sunday.

El-Adly attributed the decline of harassment cases due to the heavy deployment of police, including female police, at public gatherings, as well as the deployment of rapid intervention forces.

Over the Eid holiday, the NCW monitored areas with large public gatherings to look out for instances of harassment.

El-Adly said that the NCW monitored gatherings in Giza’s Mohandiseen, Gameet El-Dowal El-Arabiya, Dokki, Corniche El-Nil, Agouza, Tahrir, Kasr El-Nil Bridge, Saray El-Qobba, as well as Cairo’s Abbas El-Akkad and Makram Ebeid districts.

In recent years, female police officers have been deployed by the interior ministry on the streets to combat sexual harassment during Eid.

Sexual harassment was criminalised in Egypt in 2014. The law imposes jail terms of no less than six months, and/or fines of EGP 3,000 to EGP 5,000 ($419 to $700) on those found guilty of sexual harassment.

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