Egypt detains two men on ‘suspicion’ over their sexual orientation: HRW

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11/02/2020

Egyptian authorities have unlawfully detained two men, citing “suspicion” over their sexual orientation and under the pretext of investigation into a high-profile gang-rape case, Human Rights Watch (HRW) said on Monday. The rights group called for the immediate release of 21-year-old Seif Bedour and 40-year-old Ahmed al-Ganzoury, who were arrested separately in August and are now facing charges of drug use and “homosexual debauchery”, despite denials from their families. Bedour and Ganzoury are among a number of individuals arrested in connection with the 2014 Fairmont Nile City hotel gang rape case, in which a group of at least nine men allegedly raped an 18-year-old woman during a party, then used a video of the incident to blackmail her into silence. The case has been grabbing headlines in Egypt since allegations surfaced on social media in July. Accusations were levelled at a number of wealthy young men by users urging the authorities to hold the perpetrators accountable, as an anti-sexual assault movement labelled “Egypt’s MeToo” gathered momentum.

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