Amnesty International reports that at least 11 men have since been arrested, and one man has been sentenced to six years in jail after Egyptian media launched a critical campaign against those who raised the rainbow flag at a Mashrou’ Leila concert, a popular Lebanese alternative rock band whose lead singer is openly gay.
Six of the Egyptian men arrested for “promoting sexual deviancy” and “debauchery” on social media will be subjected to anal examinations ahead of their October 1 trial.
Amnesty said the Forensic Medical Authority was due to subject the six men to anal examinations to determine whether they have had homosexual sex.
Judicial sources said any defendant accused of “debauchery” or “sexual deviancy”, a euphemism for homosexuality in Egypt, is subjected to a medical examination based on an order from the Public Prosecutor.“Allegations of torturing or insulting those medically examined are lies not worth responding to. The examinations are carried out by a forensic doctor who swore to respect his profession and its ethics,” one judicial source said.
Egypt’s Muslim religious establishment is voicing its support for the government’s moves against homosexuals.
“Al Azhar will stand against calls for sexual perversion the same way it has stood against extremist groups,” a preacher at the 1000-year-old seat of Sunni Muslim learning said in his Friday prayers sermon.
Although homosexuality is not specifically outlawed in Egypt, it is a conservative society and discrimination is rife. Gay men are frequently arrested and typically charged with debauchery, immorality or blasphemy.