Egypt, Africa

Egypt is one of the most populous countries in Africa and the Middle East. The great majority of its estimated 82 million live near the banks of the Nile River. Egypt is famous for its ancient civilization and some of the world's most famous monuments, including the Giza pyramid complex and its Great Sphinx. The southern city of Luxor contains numerous ancient artifacts, such as the Karnak Temple and the Valley of the Kings. Egypt is widely regarded as an important political and cultural nation of the Middle East. Homosexuality is barely acknowledged by the country's authorities. Homosexual acts are covered by general legislation governing public (Muslim & Christian) morality. In the 21st century, this legislation has been subject to stricter interpretation, and homosexual men live under continual threat of persecution and imprisonment. Also see: Islam and Homosexuality

 

News & Reports:

 

Gay and Transgender Egyptians, Harassed and Entrapped, Are Driven Underground

Cairo — The last days of the government of Hosni Mubarak and the turbulent revolution that followed were tense, occasionally gut-wrenching times for many in Egypt. But for gay and transgender Egyptians, it was also a period of unaccustomed freedom. They socialized in bars and sidewalk cafes and met partners over cellphone dating apps with… Read more »

Egypt: Gay foreigners can be banned from entry or deported

An Egyptian court has ruled that gay foreigners can be deported from the country or banned from entry. The case, brought before an Egyptian administrative court on Tuesday (14 April), involved an allegedly gay Libyan man who had previously been barred from returning to the country by the interior ministry in 2008. Hoping to return… Read more »

Business leaders urged to call out Egypt on LGBT rights

International business leaders have been urged to address the plight of LGBT people at an Egyptian economic conference this week. A number of prominent executives are scheduled to speak at the Egypt Economic Development Conference (EEDC) being held in Sharm El-Sheikh from 13 to 15 March. The Human Rights Campaign (HRC) has written to these… Read more »

The Sisi government’s repression of Egypt’s LGBT community

Under the pretext or preserving public morality gay men have found self-described the Egyptian Ministry of Interior’s “vice squad” (a euphemistic term with connotations eerily reminiscent of “moral police”) charging and arresting them for “debauchery”. Their rights are, like many of their compatriots, pretty much non-existent, especially if they are deemed by the authorities to… Read more »

Sisi Is Persecuting, Prosecuting, and Publicly Shaming Egypt’s Gays

The military government in Cairo is trying to prove it’s more ‘Islamic’ than the Islamists it ousted in 2013. So it’s hunting down easy targets: LGBT Egyptians. Cairo — Mohamed was sitting in the steam room nursing his bad back when dozens of Egypt’s black-clad police officers burst into the downtown Cairo bathhouse with a… Read more »

Egypt Reduces Sentences For 8 Men Who Appeared In Gay Wedding Video

An Egyptian appeals court on Saturday reduced sentences for eight men who appeared in a gay wedding video. The men were sentenced to three years in prison for “inciting debauchery.” The appeals court upheld the convictions but reduced their sentences to one year in prison, the AP reported. The court is expected to explain its… Read more »

Arresting gay people isn’t the way to deal with AIDS

Today is the first hearing for the trial of at least 26 men alleged to be taking part in sexual activities at a bathhouse in central Cairo. Over the last two weeks, Egypt’s human rights activists have responded with furore at the sting operation and broadcasted arrest of these men. The sting operation, organised by… Read more »

Egypt: Men accused of ‘spreading AIDS’ in bathhouse to go to trial

Dozens of men who were recently arrested in a raid on a bathhouse in Cairo, Egypt went to trial this week accused of “debauchery”. The men arrested were accused of “perversions” as news reporters told police that the bathhouses were used for “group perversions”. One reporter posted pictures of the dozens of men, mainly naked,… Read more »

Egyptian Reporter Aids in Police Crackdown on Gays

For a while after the Arab Spring, it looked like gay Egyptians were finally feeling safe enough to step out of the closet. But now, they’re being forced back underground as a result of an escalating police crackdown – one that activists say is being encouraged by pro-government media. Cairo police stormed a bath house… Read more »

Living in fear: Egypt’s gay community

Cairo (CNN) — Two men exchange rings and hug in celebration aboard a Nile boat, as ululations fill the air and a traditional engagement song plays in the background. But within days, their celebration has turned to shock and sadness: after a video of the “gay wedding” spread across Egyptian social media, the men were… Read more »

Egypt Arrests 25 Men For Homosexuality In Bath House Raid

Cairo (AP) — An Egyptian official says security forces raided a bath house and arrested 25 men for homosexuality, dragging them naked out of the building in downtown Cairo. The security official says the raid on the bath house, or hammam, took place on Sunday. He spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not… Read more »

Egypt: Dozens of men accused of ‘spreading AIDS’ arrested naked in bathhouse raid

Dozens of men have been arrested in a raid on a bathhouse in Cairo, Egypt at the weekend, and a programme will air this week on “the dens for spreading AIDS in Egypt”. The men arrested were accused of “perversions”, according to reports. News reporters told police that the bathhouses were used for “group perversions”.… Read more »

Egypt: Eight men sentenced to three years in prison for ‘gay wedding’ video

Cairo court hands down jail sentence amid uproar from defendants’ families A court in Egypt has sentenced eight men to three years in prison for appearing in a video that purported to show a gay wedding. The video, which became an online hit after it was posted on YouTube in September, shows two men kissing,… Read more »

Rally condemns Egypt anti-gay witch-hunt

Forty people rallied outside the Egyptian Embassy in London on Saturday 18 October to protest against the witch-hunting of LGBTI people in Egypt. It was part of an International Day of Action in solidarity with persecuted Egyptian LGBTIs. Similar protests took place in Berlin, New York, Mexico City, Ottawa and Barcelona. The London protest was… Read more »

Egypt: Men arrested over same-sex wedding ‘test negative’ for homosexuality

Men arrested for taking part in a mock same-sex wedding in Egypt have ‘tested negative’ for homosexuality. Seven men were arrested over the weekend, over a video showing an unofficial same-sex wedding ceremony on a riverboat in the Nile. The video was posted in April, but had gone viral in Egypt this month, with many… Read more »

Egypt orders arrest of men over ‘gay marriage’ video

(Reuters) – Egyptian authorities have ordered the arrest of nine men who appeared in a video purporting to show the country’s first gay marriage, accusing them of inciting debauchery and undermining public morals. Gay marriage is not legal in Egypt, a conservative Muslim society where the footage, which went viral on social media sites last… Read more »

Al-Sisi’s Egypt Is Worse For Gays Than The Muslim Brotherhood

President Sisi, already infamous for his crackdowns on dissidents and the press, is now going after the LGBT community. Cairo, Egypt — The party at a villa in a western suburb of Cairo was in full swing when three armored police trucks quietly pulled up to the main gate. More than 300 men and women… Read more »

Egypt’s gay community fears government crackdown

Recent series of raids and long jail terms fan fears that gay people may be new target of authoritarian government Egypt’s gay community fears it is the latest target of the country’s authoritarian government following a series of recent raids on gay people. Activists interviewed by the Guardian said they had documented up to nine… Read more »

Egypt: 4 sentenced to 3-8 years on gay sex charges

Agence France-Presse reports via Al Arabiya News: A court in Egypt sentenced four men to up to eight years in prison on Monday for practicing homosexuality, a judicial official said. Prosecutors had accused the men of holding “deviant parties” and dressing in women’s clothes. Three were sentenced to eight years and the fourth to three… Read more »

Gay Egyptians come out of the closet

Cairo – Being gay in Egypt used to be a closely-guarded secret. Yet thanks to more widespread Internet use by Egyptians and the demonstrations of the Arab Spring calling for freedom, many gays are more open about their sexuality. Social media groups have been created to discuss gays’ problems, religious fatwas (legal pronouncements) regarding homosexuality… Read more »

Egypt blocks inclusion of gay health in World Health Organization’s agenda

Egypt’s Health Minister, Mohamed Mostafa Hamed, boasted that he ‘succeeded’ in deleting an item on improving the health of LGBT people from the agenda of the World Health Organization (WHO) LGBT health issues were removed from the agenda of the World Health Organization’s (WHO) board meeting, after Egypt and other member states of the Eastern… Read more »

Egypt’s homosexuals struggle for freedom

Fifty-two men were arrested on May 11, 2001, on Queen Boat, a gay nightclub on the Nile in Cairo, in one of the most publicized police raids against homosexuals in Egypt. Out of the accused, many of whom were tortured and raped while detained, 23 were convicted for debauchery and defaming Islam and sentenced to… Read more »

Iran, Russia and Egypt threaten to scupper UN women’s declaration due to gay rights opposition

An alliance made up of Iran, Russia and Egypt has threatened to derail a UN declaration urging an end to violence against women and girls by objecting to language concerning LGBT rights and reproduction. Reuters reports delegates to the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women are racing to reach a deal on a… Read more »

Egypt: Campaigners say life has gotten worse for gay people since the Arab Spring

Homophobia is on the rise in Egypt since the revolution that toppled Hosni Mubarak, according to the Egypt Initiative for Personal Rights (EIPR). The visibility of the gay men and women who took to the streets during the revolution in 2011 has caused a backlash against them, instead of clinching them the greater freedom they… Read more »

‘Getting worse’: Egypt’s gays fear government crackdown

Cairo, Egypt – Maha remembers going to Tahrir Square on Jan. 25, 2011. The 27-year-old office worker only wanted to look around the Cairo intersection filled with thousands of protesters. But seeing Egypt’s revolution unfold before her, she left to get friends and quickly returned. Without planning to, Maha became one of the highly visible… Read more »

The Cultural & Religious Debates on HIV/AIDS in the Muslim World

On December 8, 2012, the Joint United Nations Program on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) hosted a Red Gala Dinner at the Fairmont Hotel in Cairo, Egypt to raise awareness about the virus and how it affects the lives of over three hundred thousand people across the Arab world. The by-invitation-only event featured high-profile celebrity attendees, including satirical… Read more »

Egypt: 7 men remain detained over anti-gay charges

Seven men in Egypt, who were arrested for breaking the country’s law on sexual conduct, are reportedly still in prison. According to OutQ News, they were captured in a police raid of a Cairo apartment last month and are accused of being gay. Homosexuality is not technically illegal in Egypt, so the young men, whose… Read more »

The infamous “Queen Boat”

I happen to be one of the men who were on the infamous “Queen Boat” that was raided by under cover police agents on the early morning of May 11, 2001. I currently live in the United States and would like to share my story with you. I had a rough day and I really… Read more »

Egyptian Gay Rights Magazine ‘Ehna’ Goes Dark After Single Issue

An online magazine devoted to gay rights in Egypt has shuttered after publishing its first issue. Ehna (We) was believed to be the first magazine to cater to Egypt’s LGBT community. A May 27 post on the magazine’s Facebook page read: “We have been forced to shut down the online magazine due to security reasons.… Read more »

Maghreb bike tour supports human rights

A bike tour by young Tunisians, Libyans and Egyptians aims to gather signatures for a petition against torture and human rights abuses, Tunisia Live reported on Sunday (July 1st). According to Mosaique FM, the delegation is meeting government and civil society representatives across North Africa. The young activists have already obtained signatures from the Egyptian… Read more »

Coming Out Story: We’re Not in Cairo Anymore

Egyptian multihyphenate Omar Sharif Jr., grandson of the screen legend, comes out both as gay and half Jewish — and worries that his country’s fledgling government will persecute others like him. I write this article in fear. Fear for my country, fear for my family, and fear for myself. My parents will be shocked to… Read more »

A future for gay Egypt?

Lesbian and gay Egyptians express their concerns for the future and suggest a way forwards The Gay Star News feature on the future for lesbians, gay men, bisexuals and transgender people in Egypt, which we ran in January, attracted both criticism and praise. Much of the most vociferous praise came from LGBT people actually living… Read more »

Gay Egypt News & Reports 2010-11

Useful website for LGBT Africa: http://www.mask.org.za/ Also see: More information about Islam & Homosexuality al-fatiha-news Middle East Youth Muslim Yahoo Group: "Queer Muslim Revolution" Queer Muslim magazine: Huriyah, Barra Gay Islam discussion groups: Muslim Gay Men     LGBT muslim Queer Jihad           Bi-muslims Trans-muslims       Lesbian muslims 1 Musicians group calls for cancellation of upcoming Elton John concert… Read more »

Gay Egypt News & Reports 2008-09

Also see: Islam and Homosexuality Behind the Mask website for LGBT Africa Human Rights Watch: In a Time of Torture: The Assault on Justice In Egypt’s Crackdown on Homosexual Conduct by Scott Long, March 2004 Gay Middle East Web Site: http://www.gaymiddleeast.com/ Queer Muslim magazine: Huriyah 1 Onscreen lesbian kiss upsets Egyptian academics 1/08 2 Egypt… Read more »

Gay Egypt News & Reports 2003-07

Also See: Islam and Homosexuality Important Report: In a Time of Torture: The Assault on Justice In Egypt’s Crackdown on Homosexual Conduct 3/04 by Scott Long, director of the LGBT Rights Project at Human Rights Watch 1 Recent documentary films about LGBT in the Middle East 2 Egyptian Police Entrap Gay Men Through Internet 1/03… Read more »

Gay Egypt News & Reports 2001-02

Also See: Islam and Homosexuality Useful website for LGBT Africa: http://www.mask.org.za/ Important Report: In a Time of Torture: The Assault on Justice In Egypt’s Crackdown on Homosexual Conduct 3/04 by Scott Long, director of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Rights Project at Human Rights Watch 0 Recent documentarty films 1 ‘Gay rights’ protest as… Read more »