A Surge In The Sexual Harassment Files: Justice Served With The Sentencing Of Multiple Predators
Sexual harassment has always been regarded as a sensitive topic, especially in the Arab/Middle Eastern countries. When it comes to reporting such incidents, there always seemed to be a division between two conceptions. One is baseless, while the other is grounded in logic.
When a girl is sexually assaulted, she’s directly shouldered all the responsibility and blame. Want to report the assault? Get ready to be bashed for your audacity. A wise girl bites her tongue and says nothing instead of stirring an earth-shattering scandal she can never live with its consequences – a baseless misconception many have lived by, and many more had to suffer from over the years. But no more!
In recent years, baby steps have been taken regarding the matter. Women finally started to speak up, despite facing relentless scrutiny from many when doing so. But someone had to break the silence, and to be able to stand up for yourself and speak up is a feat of its own. Who’s to say we should keep our lips sealed, knowing we’ll be up for judgment otherwise?
Slowly, but steadily, all eyes somehow shifted to the woman’s file, acknowledging the matter of sexual harassment in particular and the attention it deserves. Instagram accounts such as @Assault Police, @Speak Up, and many more, have used their platforms to aid in change. To be a safe territory for survivors to fight their battles. To give voice to those who have been obliged to stay silent, further driven by the fear of public shame and scrutiny.
Sparking and encouraging conversations regarding this matter made great strides in condemning a society that helped in spreading society, consequently breeding further sense of entitlement to those who sexually assault our girls. Taking a rather gritty approach, women started to shamelessly share their stories and claim their rights.
It’s about time we defy the shaming of women seeking justice and asking for their basic right – to feel safe. Women’s solidarity manifested itself when people started showing support for the survivors..and when national and international celebrities caught the fever too! Staunch support has been shown to the front liners fighting their sexual predators, and we can confidently say that it has paid off.
Whenever a harassment incident goes viral on social media, we quickly hear about them being caught and investigated with afterwards. The first infamous incident was with Ahmed Zaki who was sentenced to eight years in prison for sexual assault and since then, a snowball effect was in place, encouraging people to speak up.
With the government prioritizing the woman’s file, authorities have been speedily taking legal actions, from arresting accused parties to amending current laws. Subsequently, we witnessed the trials and imprisonments of many of the sexual harassers. We have witnessed the triumph of the survivors when justice was being served.
There were several incidents in particular that were a concern for the public, such as the case of Michael Fahmy and those involved in the Fairmont incident. And yesterday, we were finally able to heave a sigh of relief regarding this matter as we witnessed several sexual predators finally get the punishment they deserve.
A few months ago we became aware of the hideous case of Michael Fahmy, a so called psychiatrist and church servant exploiting underage Coptic girls, and raping them anally under the pretext of “treatment.” Posts of accusations spiraled all over social media where he was publicly shunned and called out for his atrocities.
After many investigations carried out for months, the Cairo court sentenced Michael Fahmy to life imprisonment for luring, kidnapping, taking advantage of and sexually assaulting underage girls from the Coptic Christian community.
North Coast Gang Rape
The investigation authorities had referred the defendants in the North Coast case to the Criminal Court, after investigations revealed that they kidnapped the victim on December 8th and 9th in the North Coast. The first defendant deceived her and made her believe she was there for a conference for real estate investment in her field of work. Claiming to have booked a solo stay for her in a hotel, she ended up having to stay in a private villa, after convincing her that there were no available hotel rooms. Later, they immobilized her until she lost her strength and lost consciousness, stripped her of her clothes and raped her.
It wasn’t the first time that these names faced sexual assault charges, as they were initially investigated in the Fairmont rape case as well. After securing enough evidence from witnesses, in addition to the victim’s testimony, it was proven that the three of them were involved in the gang rape incident.
Consequently, an Egyptian court has sentenced Amir Zayed (who was present during the trial) to 15 years imprisonment and Youssef Korra and Sherif El Komy to life imprisonment.