Did the Muslim Brotherhood Pay to Have Women Assaulted at Protests?

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Lara Logan in Tahrir Square in 2007

Lara Logan in Tahrir Square in 2007

Egypt’s ruling party is paying gangs of thugs to sexually assault women protesting inCairo’sTahrir Square against President Mohamed Morsi, activists said.

They also said the Muslim Brotherhood is paying gangs to beat up men who are taking part in the latest round of protests, which followed a decree by President Morsi to give himself sweeping new powers.

Around 200,000 people gathered yesterday in Tahrir Square, the heart of last year’s revolution which toppled President Hosni Mubarak.

But amid the calls for democracy a sinister threat has emerged. Magda Adly, the director of the Nadeem Centre for Human Rights, said that under Mubarak, the Government paid thugs to beat male protestors and sexually assault women.

‘This is still happening now,’ she told The Times. ‘I believe thugs are being paid money to do this … the Muslim Brotherhood have the same political approaches as Mubarak,’ she said.

One protestor, Yasmine, told the newspaper how she had been in the square filming the demonstrations for a few hours when the crowd suddenly turned.

Before she knew what was happening, about 50 men had surrounded her and began grabbing her breasts. She said they ripped off her clothes, starting with her headscarf and for nearly an hour, indecently assaulted her with their hands.

A few men tried to help her but they were beaten away. Eventually some residents who had seen the attack from their windows came to her aid and an elderly couple pulled her into their home. She suffered internal injuries and was unable to walk for a week.

Four of Yasmine’s friends were also sexually assaulted in the square that day, in the summer.

Afaf el-Sayed, a journalist and activist, told the newspaper she was assaulted by a group of men while protesting in Tahrir Square just over a month ago and she was sure her attackers were ‘thugs from the Muslim Brotherhood’.

In February 2011 the correspondent for the American network CBS, Lara Logan, endured a half-hour sexual assault inTahrir Squareby a group of men. She said after the ordeal that she had been ‘raped with their hands’.

While the exact frequency of these attacks is unknown, activists have reported nearly 20 attacks in the last ten days and say there has been a dramatic increase in mob sex attacks on protestors in the last year.

Most attacks take place in one particular corner of the square, at roughly the same time every evening, and usually starts with a group of men forming a human chain around women as if to protect them.

Yasmine said she was almost sure the assault was planned. She managed to throw her camera to a friend and was able to watch the footage later. She told The Times: ‘Just before the attack it looks like men are getting into position. They look like they’re up to something, they don’t look like random protestors.’

The newspaper spoke to two men who admitted they were paid to target female protestors. Victor and Tutu, both in their thirties, said they operate in a group of around 65 local men and got paid between £10 and £20 a time. But they would not reveal who pays them.

‘We’re told to go out and sexually harass girls so they leave the demonstration,’ Victor told The Times. He said the aim was to cause disruption and instil fear in protesters. He said members of the public sometimes joined in. 

Read the rest: Muslim Brotherhood Paying Gangs to Assault Women Protesters in Egypt 

And read more about this travesty: Egyptian Women Assaulted at March Against Sexual Harassment.

This entry was posted in Egypt, Muslim Brotherhood, Sexual Harassment in Islam on by .

About Asma Marwan

The Story of the Poetess Asma bint [daughter of] Marwan and her Death * There was a poetess [in Medina] who wrote a poem against Mohammed and his new way of life, Islam. Mohammed said, “Who will rid me of Marwan’s daughter?” One of his followers heard him and on that very night went to the woman’s home and killed her. The assassin was able to do the work in the dark as the woman slept. Her other children lay in the room, but her babe lay on her breast. The stealthy assassin removed the child and drove the knife into her with such force that he pinned her to the bed. In the morning, he went to Mohammed and told him [what he’d done]. Mohammed said, “You have helped Allah and his Apostle.” When asked about the consequences, Mohammed said, “Two goats won’t butt their heads together over this.” Mohammed turned to the people in the mosque. He said, “If you wish to see a man who has assisted Allah and his Prophet, look ye here.” Omar cried, “What, the blind Omeir?” “No,” said Mohammed, “call him Omeir the Seeing.” * from the Sira (the life of Mohammed) Source Texts Guillaume, A. 1955. The Life of Mohammad: A Translation of Bin Ishaq’s Sirat Rasul Allah Oxford: Oxford University Press, page 996. Muir, Sir William. 1923. The Life of Mohammad: From Original Sources Edinburgh: Reprint, John Grant, page 239.

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