Today, 13 June, 2012, is the day to tweet and blog against sexual harassment in Egypt. On this occasion, Nazra for Feminist Studies is publishing three testimonies of women who were sexually assaulted by a mob on Mohammed Mahmoud Street on Saturday, 2 June. The collective sexual assault and harassment that took place on the vicinity of Tahrir Square on June 2 and 8, 2012 shed light on the gravity of sexual harassment and assault on Egyptian streets. Although the three testimonies do not account for the entirety of the brutality that many women experienced on that Saturday and the Friday after, they are one example that offers a window to the dynamics of mob sexual assault and harassment on those two days, which are not the first of its kind.
The attack on the women was calculated and organized so as to scare women away from the public sphere, to punish women for their participation, and to keep them at home to avoid the premeditated attacks against them. The collective harassment was repeated on Friday, 8 June, during a protest that aimed to protest the sexual harassment and assault that took place on June 2. The testimonies document the experience of the three women, who were walking together, got sexually harassed, and then were suddenly separated by groups of men who sexually assaulted them. The testimonies describe how the women were groped by tens of men all over their bodies, and how the sexual assault reached to tearing the clothes of one of them. The three women agreed to share their stories in hope that this will help in fighting this growing trend, and we thank them for their courage.
To read the testimonies, click here.