Anti- sexual harassment initiative to kick-off alongside Eid al-Adha

Thursday 01-09-2016 04:48 PM

A rally for women against sexual harassment (ASWAT MASRIYA)

CAIRO, Sept 1 (Aswat Masriya) - A new anti-sexual harassment initiative entitled "Aman," which aims to end sexual harassment, is set to launch alongside Eid al-Adha celebrations, its organisers said on Thursday.

Reports of sexual harassment and assault in crowded areas increase during the holidays.

"Aman," an Arabic word which translates into security, is a project of the center "Equality for Training and Consultancy." According to the center, "Aman" aims to encourage Egyptian women to report crimes of sexual violence to authorities, and to use media to their advantage.

The initiative also targets men and boys to raise awareness amongst them, and to stop them from practicing sexual violations against women.  

The initiative seeks to create bridges of communication and dialogue with all those involved in anti-harassment activism, and to eventually create an environment of security and safety for women in Egypt. 

Egypt criminalized sexual harassment for the first time in 2014 during the term of interim president Adly Mansour.

The law imposes jail terms of no less than six months, and/or fines of LE3,000 to LE5,000 on those who are found guilty of sexual harassment in public or private areas

Despite this law, sexual harassment in Egypt remains largely "unchecked," the center argues. In addition, there is an absence of qualified staff to execute the law.

A study by UN Women in 2013 said that 99 percent of Egyptian women have been subjected to harassment. The National Council for Human Rights in November 2012 said that 70 percent of women are harassed in the streets, public spaces and transportation.

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