Report: Women Sexually Abused In Prisons

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Report: Women sexually abused in Egyptian prisons… some 14 times in one day

YouTube clip from Al-Jazeera entitled: A catastrophic report exposes cases of rape inside military prisons. One girl was raped 14 times

The clip was posted on June 29, 2014.

Presenter: The delegation submitted a general report about the violations that took place against Egyptian women since the military coup and until the first of June. The delegation also submitted another detailed report about cases of rape and sexual assault taking place against female detainees inside Egyptian prisons and police stations. The delegation submitted an authenticated report of seven cases of rape of female detainees. The report included a list of the names of detention centres and the names of police officers and individuals accused of raping the women including the cases of two women who were raped 14 times in one day in one of the detention centres belonging to Central Security Forces. One of the female detainees was suspended naked and sexually assaulted and was forced to watch obscene scenes. The delegation, which is composed of the European Coalition for Democracy and Human Rights, called for placing Egyptian women under a special category by the Committee for Women and Children and called for opening an investigation, by a neutral committee, into the violations and for opening the prisons and police station for inspection as well as for making police officers and cadets accountable for their actions.

Narrator: Documented testimonies of cases of rape to which women were subjected inside Egyptian prisons and police stations keep being uncovered. The latest case was disclosed by lawyer Ahmad Sayf Al-Islam Hammad and was publicised by human rights activist Haytham Abu Khalil. It is the case of an Al-Azhar female student who was raped inside an armoured police vehicle.

Lawyer Hammad: Sixty-eight people were accused in this case. It happened on December 28, 2013. On that day students were arrested inside the university. They were then taken to Nasr City police station and from there on to Al-Salam Military Camp. They were questioned by the prosecution there. We were lucky that [the girl] was released on bail set at 500 Egyptian pounds. She was the only person [to be released] from amongst the accused. We were lucky she was released. I was surprised afterwards that her mother [spoke about] problems between Nada and her husband. I tried to intervene to reconcile them. Her mother came to me in the office with tears dropping from her eyes. I asked her: “What’s wrong? Are you the cause of this? Why doesn’t your daughter want to return to her husband?” She kept saying it was the prison and this and that. Finally, she broke down and said: “My daughter, this and that happened to her”. The officer raped her. She told me about this disastrous incident.

Narrator: In the meantime, the International Coalition of Expatriate Egyptians has published the first report that documents cases of rape and sexual abuse inside Egyptian prisons and police stations. The coalition made a submission to the UN Human Rights Commission about these violations.

Female witness: We have received reports of several rape and sexual assault cases. We have documented seven cases. Out of concern for safety of the victims, we keep the names of the victims and the assailants and the places were the crimes took place confidential.

Narrator: The European Coalition for Freedom and Democracy, one of the affiliates of the International Coalition of Egyptian Expatriates, published a booklet entitled Save Cleopatra that deals with violations perpetrated against Egyptian women since the coup and until now.

Female witness: I shall speak about four cases. One of them was kidnapped by security forces. She was assaulted by persons dressed in police and army uniforms inside the prison vehicle then she was thrown on the road; it was a gang rape. The second case was kidnapped and assaulted inside a police station. She was gang raped by officers and cadets. There were two cases last month that were raped 14 times in one day. This happened in one of the central security camps.

Narrator: Violations did not stop at the perpetration of rape against female detainees. There were other violations too.

Female witness: One of the female detainees was suspended completely naked like a pendulum. She was sexually assaulted by all the police officers and cadets present at the time. Young women were forced to watch indecent videos. In one of the prisons two male officers were naked while they searched female detainees. The floor was wiped using the bodies of victims, this happened in the Nasr City police station’s second precinct. Some female detainees were paraded naked in front of police officers and cadets and were sexually assaulted.

Narrator: These savage assaults have not attracted the attention of the authorities who have not taken steps to investigate them despite repeated appeals from the local and international communities for them to do so.