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The Australian
November 21, 2008 03:26am AEDT | Make this site your homepage

400 teens arrested for flirting in Cairo

>From correspondents in Cairo | November 21, 2008
Article from:  Agence France-Presse

EGYPTIAN police have rounded up hundreds of teenage boys in Cairo in a day-long 
crackdown on sexual harassment.
"We have arrested a large number of boys who were flirting with girls," Cairo's 
police director Faruq Lashin said.

About 400 teenagers, aged between 15 and 17, were arrested on Wednesday and 
will be brought before a judge, he said.

Police targeted teenagers in front of schools, universities and along the 
Nile's banks, he said.

The teenagers were expected to be fined, a police official said.

Women's rights groups in Egypt have long campaigned against sexual harassment 
and assault in Cairo, accusing police of ignoring the phenomenon.

On Monday, a Cairo court jailed a teenager for one year for sexually assaulting 
two women.

Another teenager, a 17 year old, is facing trial on the same charge.

At least 34 men were arrested after they allegedly assaulted women in an 
affluent Cairo neighbourhood during a Muslim holiday in January.

Such convictions are relatively rare in Egypt, which does not have a law 
defining sexual harassment, but a court in October sentenced a man to three 
years in jail for groping a woman.

Women's rights activists welcomed that ruling and said it was unprecedented in 

The Egyptian Centre for Women's Rights (ECWR) issued a survey this summer 
saying 83 per cent of Egyptian women and 98 per cent of foreign women in Egypt 
had experienced sexual harassment.

The study said only 12 per cent of the 2500 women who reported cases of sexual 
harassment to ECWR went to the police with their complaint.

Copyright 2008 News Limited. All times AEDT (GMT + 11).

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