Israeli Tourist Released from Egypt after “Witch Hunt”
August 7, 2003
A gay Israeli tourist who was kept captive for 45 days in Egypt has been
released, according to press reports.
The tourist, who has remained anonymous to protect his identity, was
arrested on June 20, 2003 in Cairo, after meeting an undercover policeman in
an Internet chat room.
According to GayMiddleEast.com,
which originally broke the story, the man was arrested immediately after
meeting the policeman, although reasons why this happened have not been
Homosexuality is not illegal in Egypt, although civil Sharia law does class
it as immoral.
The tourist was then taken to Cairo Prison for several days, where he was
put under intense interrogation from the Egyptian authorities. During this
time, he was forced to take an HIV test.
When the man finally got to see a judge on July 14th, he was placed back in
prison for a further 15 days before his trial time could be agreed. He was
Egypt has been known to arrest gay men through entrapment before, the most
famous case being in 2001, when 35 people were arrested for attending a gay
night at the Queen Boat floating club.
Those arrested were accused of devil worship and having sex parties. The
people were beaten and tortured before gaining a trial, which saw 25 of them
sent to prison for terms between 1 and 5 years.
GayMiddleEast.com says it has
approached the Israeli man for an interview, but it has been declined.
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