Egypt Jails 21 Men for Homosexuality
U.K., March 17, 2003
SUMMARY: An Egyptian court has jailed 21 men for
practicing homosexuality after their original convictions were quashed on
An Egyptian court has jailed 21 men for practicing
homosexuality after their original convictions were quashed on presidential
The men were arrested in May 2001 at a Cairo nightclub
known for being popular with gay men. A special security court in November
2001 found them guilty under the country’s morality laws.
President Hosni Mubarak had ordered a retrial after the
original sentences handed down to the men led to heavy criticism by global
human rights activists. The men have now been sentenced to three years
imprisonment each—longer than their original sentences. However, they now
have a right to appeal, which had previously been denied to them.
Another 29 men were acquitted.
A representative of the US-based group Human Rights
Watch, Scott Long, told Reuters news agency the sentences were “appalling”
and “based on flimsy evidence.”
Human rights organizations had put pressure on Egypt to
review the original sentences, heavily criticizing the government and arguing
that the men were on trial for their sexual orientation and for exercising
freedom of speech.
[Home] [World] [Egypt]