CAIRO ( Associated Press) — Egypt’s public prosecutor ordered Monday that 13 teenagers who were arrested over the weekend and accused of harassing two female tourists at the Giza pyramids near Cairo be held during the investigation.
The young men were arrested after a video circulated on social networks showing a group of minors hanging around two young women at the famous archaeological site, one of Egypt’s main tourist attractions.
In the recording, the young men are seen taunting the women and some are pressing against them as they try to walk away. A woman turns and tries to push one of the young men. It is not distinguished if any of the minors fondles the women. A voice is also heard saying that the video should be sent to the Ministry of Tourism.
A tour guide who filmed the incident on his phone accused the youths of “verbally and physically” harassing the women, charges they deny, according to prosecutors.
The video has sparked outrage on social media in this majority-Muslim country where sexual harassment is rampant, as is sexual misconduct, which mostly consists of whistling, pinching or groping in public.
According to the prosecutor’s statement, the young people arrested are between 13 and 15 years old. The statement does not provide details about the tourists.
If charged, the youths will be tried in juvenile court.
Visitors to the Giza pyramids and other famous archaeological sites in Egypt are constantly harassed and followed by young men who aggressively offer them tours, souvenirs, and rides on chariots or camels.
The issue of sexual harassment in Egypt gained global attention during and after the 2011 uprising that toppled President Hosni Mubarak, when women were harassed, groped, and in some cases beaten and sexually abused, during massive protests against of the government.