Egypt's military court to rule on virginity test case on Sunday

Ahram Online & MENA, Saturday 10 Mar 2012

The medical doctor charged with subjecting women to virginity tests at the beginning of Egypt's revolution is to hear a ruling on Sunday

Samira Ibrahim
Samira Ibrahim flashes a victory sign after the court ruling in Cairo yesterday. (Photo: Ahmed Ali/AP)

Egypt's military court is to rule on Sunday on the case against Doctor Ahmed Adel El-Mogy, who is accused of submitting women to virginity tests.

MD El-Mogy, a 27-year-old conscript, is accused of conducting the test on seven women, including Samira Ibrahim, who is pressing charges.

The women were initially arrested on 9 March, after the military attempted to disperse a sit-in at Cairo’s Tahrir Square. They were then taken to the C28 military prosecution facility, where the tests were allegedly carried out.

In a taped account of the incident posted on YouTube, Ibrahim states that she was taken into a room, told to undress and then subjected to the test by a man dressed in a khaki army uniform. Ibrahim was the only one of the women to press charges against Egypt’s armed forces and ruling military council.

On 27 December, the State Council Administrative Court issued a landmark ruling in Ibrahim’s favour, outlawing the use of virginity tests on female detainees.

On the same day as the ruling, the head of Egypt’s military judiciary, Adel El-Morsy stated that the administrative court’s order to suspend the practice of subjecting female detainees to undergo virginity tests is not applicable, simply because such a practice was never part of the military’s prison code.

If such a practice was, in fact, ever used, El-Morsy says, it was simply from individual volition. He added that the person responsible for subjecting women to virginity tests would have to face criminal accountability. In fact, says El-Morsy, the doctor accused of doing so is being tried by the Supreme Military Court. 

According to the Middle East News Agency (MENA), El-Mogy's lawyer, Howaida Mostafa, claims her client is innocent. The attorney says that Rasha Abd El-Rahman's testimony, who Ibrahim herself had summoned as a witness, conflicted with testimonies of the three other eyewitnesses that had previously testified in the case.

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