Egyptian court rules against virginity tests
An Egyptian administrative court issued an order Tuesday banning virginity tests for female detainees, months after several women alleged they were subjected to such examinations following a March protest in Cairo’s Tahrir Square.
The ruling comes in the case of Samira Ibrahim, a 25-year-old marketing manager who took the country’s military led-government to court in August, alleging she was among those subjected to the test after her arrest during the March 9 protest. She said she faced death threats after bringing the case.
“Justice has been served today,” Ibrahim told CNN. “These tests are a crime and also do not comply with the constitution, which states equality between men and woman. I will not give up my rights as a woman or a human being.”
Aly Hassan, a judicial consultant affiliated with Ministry of Justice, said the order only affects the use of such tests in military prisons and on women in temporary detention.
“Those tests are not considered a crime or else the file would be in the Criminal Court,” Hassan said. “It’s the circumstances of the alleged test that may be in question here.”
In March, the human rights group Amnesty International reported that Egyptian troops beat, shocked and strip-searched women arrested during the protest in Cairo and forced them to submit to virginity tests.
Egyptian authorities initially denied requiring virginity tests, but in May, a senior general who asked not to be identified acknowledged the practice.