Egypt has jailed a pop singer for two years after she suggestively ate a banana in her recent music video, something which the Egyptian government considers to be “inciting debauchery” and harming “public morality.”
At least women can drive cars there… wait, no, “can be stoned to death there.” Sorry, it’s just so easy to confuse those.
Shaimaa Ahmed, who goes by the stage name Shyma, was arrested on November 18 after the music video for her song “I have issues” caused outrage in the Muslim-majority country.
“The content of the video clip is harmful to the Egyptian society,” MP Jalal Awara said when the video was first released, according to Gulf News Egypt. “There must be a firm stance against promoters of this substandard art.”
Her trial began on November 28 in The Misdemeanour Court in Cairo. Shyma pleaded not guilty to the charges of “inciting debauchery and producing a video that harms public morality,” RT reports.
The singer claims she was forced to pose provocatively by the director of the video, who allegedly included the scenes without her consent.
Both Shyma and the director of the video were fined (EG) £10,000 ($560) and sentenced to two years in prison, RT reports.
“I didn’t imagine all this would happen and that I would be subjected to such a strong attack from everyone, as a young singer… who has dreamt from a young age of being a singer,” Shyma wrote via Facebook after her music video caused outrage in the country.
According to Gulf News Egypt, the country’s musicians union banned Shyma from performing.
The Egyptian authorities have been able to use strict morality laws to censor and punish freedom of expression in the country.
In September, seven Egyptians were arrested after a rainbow flag, a symbol for the LGBT community, was raised during a concert in Cairo.
According to Reuters, the seven concert-goers were arrested for “promoting sexual deviancy,” something the country’s authorities cite as a way to punish homosexuals.
“Egypt should stop dedicating state resources to hunting people down for what they allegedly do in their bedrooms, or for expressing themselves at a rock concert, and should instead focus energy on improving its dire human rights record,” the Middle East and North Africa Director at Human Rights Watch, Sarah Leah Whitson, said in a statement after the arrests.
The government action was a response to a public outcry. This is what real Muslims believe.
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