Samira Ibrahim, who says she was humiliated and tortured by the  military, flashes a victory sign after the court ruling in Cairo  yesterday. Photograph: Ahmed Ali/AP
'Virginity Tests' on Egypt protesters are illegal, says judge

The 25-year-old marketing manager, who said she faced death threats  for bringing the case, told CNN: “Justice has been served today.
"These  tests are a crime and also do not comply with the constitution, which  states equality between men and women. I will not give up my rights as a  woman or a human being."
Ibrahim said her treatment showed the tests were intended to “degrade the protesters.
"The  military tortured me, labelled me a prostitute and humiliated me by  forcing on me a virginity test conducted by a male doctor where my body  was fully exposed while military soldiers watched."
After the  verdict she and others, including the presidential candidate and former  broadcaster Bothaina Kamel, marched to Tahrir Square. Ibrahim was later  photographed at Kaser el Nil bridge flashing the victory sign.
Almost in conjunction with the administrative court ruling, it was  announced that the military doctor who undertook the tests would be  referred to a military court on 3 January.
He is being charged with public indecency and disobeying military orders, but not sexual assault.

Samira Ibrahim, who says she was  humiliated and tortured by the military, flashes a victory sign after  the court ruling in Cairo yesterday. Photograph: Ahmed Ali/AP

Forced “virginity tests” on female detainees were ruled illegal in Egypt on Tuesday, after a court ordered an end to the practice.
Hundreds  of activists were in the Cairo courtroom to hear the judge, Aly Fekry,  say the army could not use the test on women held in military prisons in  a case filed by Samira Ibrahim, one of seven women subjected to the  test after being arrested in Tahrir Square during a protest on 9 March.
Fekry,  head of the Cairo administrative court, decreed that what happened to  Ibrahim and six other detainees was illegal and any similar occurrence  in the future would also be considered illegal.
The court is  expected to issue a further injunction against such tests and decree  that the test was completely illegal, opening the door for financial  compensation.
After the verdict Ibrahim, 25, posted on Twitter:  “Thank you to the people, thank you to Tahrir Square that taught me to  challenge, thank you to the revolution that taught me perseverance.”
"The  military had been denying they were doing the tests, then they said it  was a standard procedure and came up with lots of excuses about why they  were doing it."
The head of the judicial military authority,  General Adel Morsy, was cited in state-owned Al-Ahram newspaper as  saying that the administrative court ruling could not be implemented  because there was nothing in the statutes that govern military prisons  about permitting the carrying out of virginity tests. Ibrahim will  return to court in February, to appeal against the one-year suspended  sentence she received for insulting authorities and participating in an  unauthorised assembly in March.
The case brings to the fore protester complaints against military actions during the transitional period.
There  is a long list of violations attributed to the military, with some  12,000 civilians being charged and sentenced in military courts, and  numerous incidents that have led to deaths of protesters.
Almost  in conjunction with the administrative court ruling, it was announced  that the military doctor who undertook the tests would be referred to a  military court on 3 January.
He is being charged with public indecency and disobeying military orders, but not sexual assault.
Hossam  Bahgat, the head of Egyptian initiative for personal rights (EIPR),  said: “To call it a medical checkup is disingenuous. It was torture and  sexual assault.
"It wasn’t conducted in a medical clinic, but in  full view of the soldiers, hence why the charge is one of public  indecency, which is incorrect?
"The military doctor being charged  is a scapegoat, because these soldiers follow orders and what happened  to the detainees is the responsibility of those running the prison."
Ibrahim,  in recounting her ordeal to Human Rights Watch, said two officers had  entered the prison cell, where the women were detained, and asked which  of them were married.
The officers informed them they would be subjected to virginity tests to confirm they were not lying.
"They  took us out one by one … they took me to a bed in a passageway in front  of the cell. There were lots of soldiers around and they could see me.
"I asked if the soldiers could move away and the officer escorting me teased me.
"A  woman prison guard in plainclothes stood at my head and then a man in  military uniform examined me with his hand for several minutes. It was  painful. He took his time."
The case was heard in the first  circuit of the administrative court, known as the rights and freedoms  circuit, and was filed by three Egyptian rights advocacy groups – EIPR,  the Hisham Mubarak law centre and the Nadeem centre for the  rehabilitation of victims of torture.However, the court ruling is an  administrative one only, and because of the provisions of the military  penal code the chances of pursuing criminal liability against the  transgressors lies only within the jurisdiction of military  courts.Campaign groups have been documenting the escalation in sexual  violence towards female demonstrators and claim brutal tactics are used  are to deter, intimidate and humiliate those taking part in political  activities.
Last week Nadya Khalife, from Human Rights Watch,  said: “Images of military and police who strip, grope, and beat  protesters have horrified the world and brought into sharp focus the  sexual brutality Egyptian women face in public life. At this crucial  stage in Egypt’s history, women need to be able to take part in  demonstrations and elections without fear. “Security forces’ disgraceful  attacks and the government’s broader failure to address sexual violence  and harassment do not bode well for Egypt’s women.”
The New Woman  Foundation, in Egypt, said at least nine women were arrested during a  protest in November, with some accusing security forces of physical and  verbal assault.

Samira Ibrahim, who says she was humiliated and tortured by the military, flashes a victory sign after the court ruling in Cairo yesterday. Photograph: Ahmed Ali/AP

'Virginity Tests' on Egypt protesters are illegal, says judge

The 25-year-old marketing manager, who said she faced death threats for bringing the case, told CNN: “Justice has been served today.

"These tests are a crime and also do not comply with the constitution, which states equality between men and women. I will not give up my rights as a woman or a human being."

Ibrahim said her treatment showed the tests were intended to “degrade the protesters.

"The military tortured me, labelled me a prostitute and humiliated me by forcing on me a virginity test conducted by a male doctor where my body was fully exposed while military soldiers watched."

After the verdict she and others, including the presidential candidate and former broadcaster Bothaina Kamel, marched to Tahrir Square. Ibrahim was later photographed at Kaser el Nil bridge flashing the victory sign.

Almost in conjunction with the administrative court ruling, it was announced that the military doctor who undertook the tests would be referred to a military court on 3 January.

He is being charged with public indecency and disobeying military orders, but not sexual assault.

Samira Ibrahim, who says she was humiliated and tortured by the military, flashes a victory sign after the court ruling in Cairo yesterday. Photograph: Ahmed Ali/AP

Forced “virginity tests” on female detainees were ruled illegal in Egypt on Tuesday, after a court ordered an end to the practice.

Hundreds of activists were in the Cairo courtroom to hear the judge, Aly Fekry, say the army could not use the test on women held in military prisons in a case filed by Samira Ibrahim, one of seven women subjected to the test after being arrested in Tahrir Square during a protest on 9 March.

Fekry, head of the Cairo administrative court, decreed that what happened to Ibrahim and six other detainees was illegal and any similar occurrence in the future would also be considered illegal.

The court is expected to issue a further injunction against such tests and decree that the test was completely illegal, opening the door for financial compensation.

After the verdict Ibrahim, 25, posted on Twitter: “Thank you to the people, thank you to Tahrir Square that taught me to challenge, thank you to the revolution that taught me perseverance.”

"The military had been denying they were doing the tests, then they said it was a standard procedure and came up with lots of excuses about why they were doing it."

The head of the judicial military authority, General Adel Morsy, was cited in state-owned Al-Ahram newspaper as saying that the administrative court ruling could not be implemented because there was nothing in the statutes that govern military prisons about permitting the carrying out of virginity tests. Ibrahim will return to court in February, to appeal against the one-year suspended sentence she received for insulting authorities and participating in an unauthorised assembly in March.

The case brings to the fore protester complaints against military actions during the transitional period.

There is a long list of violations attributed to the military, with some 12,000 civilians being charged and sentenced in military courts, and numerous incidents that have led to deaths of protesters.

Almost in conjunction with the administrative court ruling, it was announced that the military doctor who undertook the tests would be referred to a military court on 3 January.

He is being charged with public indecency and disobeying military orders, but not sexual assault.

Hossam Bahgat, the head of Egyptian initiative for personal rights (EIPR), said: “To call it a medical checkup is disingenuous. It was torture and sexual assault.

"It wasn’t conducted in a medical clinic, but in full view of the soldiers, hence why the charge is one of public indecency, which is incorrect?

"The military doctor being charged is a scapegoat, because these soldiers follow orders and what happened to the detainees is the responsibility of those running the prison."

Ibrahim, in recounting her ordeal to Human Rights Watch, said two officers had entered the prison cell, where the women were detained, and asked which of them were married.

The officers informed them they would be subjected to virginity tests to confirm they were not lying.

"They took us out one by one … they took me to a bed in a passageway in front of the cell. There were lots of soldiers around and they could see me.

"I asked if the soldiers could move away and the officer escorting me teased me.

"A woman prison guard in plainclothes stood at my head and then a man in military uniform examined me with his hand for several minutes. It was painful. He took his time."

The case was heard in the first circuit of the administrative court, known as the rights and freedoms circuit, and was filed by three Egyptian rights advocacy groups – EIPR, the Hisham Mubarak law centre and the Nadeem centre for the rehabilitation of victims of torture.However, the court ruling is an administrative one only, and because of the provisions of the military penal code the chances of pursuing criminal liability against the transgressors lies only within the jurisdiction of military courts.Campaign groups have been documenting the escalation in sexual violence towards female demonstrators and claim brutal tactics are used are to deter, intimidate and humiliate those taking part in political activities.

Last week Nadya Khalife, from Human Rights Watch, said: “Images of military and police who strip, grope, and beat protesters have horrified the world and brought into sharp focus the sexual brutality Egyptian women face in public life. At this crucial stage in Egypt’s history, women need to be able to take part in demonstrations and elections without fear. “Security forces’ disgraceful attacks and the government’s broader failure to address sexual violence and harassment do not bode well for Egypt’s women.”

The New Woman Foundation, in Egypt, said at least nine women were arrested during a protest in November, with some accusing security forces of physical and verbal assault.