A prominent conservative lawyer in Egypt has caused outrage after declaring that men have a “patriotic duty” to rape women who wear ripped jeans. Appearing on the TV talk show Infrad, which airs on satellite channel Al-Assema, Nabih al-Wahsh took the opportunity to condemn what he perceived as inappropriate dress during a conversation on a draft law that would target prostitution and “inciting debauchery.”
“Are you happy when you see a girl walking down the street with half of her behind showing?” asked Wahsh. “I say that when a girl walks about like that, it is a patriotic duty to sexually harass her and a national duty to rape her.”
Egypt’s National Council for Women has denounced Wahsh’s remarks, and issued a statement asking media outlets to not invite speakers known for inciting violence. The Council for Women is expected to file a complaint to the attorney general against Wahsh and Al-Assema.
Later, Wahsh claimed that his comments were actually a condemnation of sexual harassment. “Girls must must respect themselves so others respect them,” he added. Egypt’s capital, Cairo, was recently named the most dangerous megacity to be a woman by the Thomas Reuters Foundation. Women in the city were found to face an uncommonly high rate of sexual violence and street harassment, and a 2015 Egypt Health Issues survey found that not only were nine in 10 women were subjected to genital mutilation, but one in five women were married before they turned 18.
Watch video of his comments below.
Read the full story at The New York Post.