In a semi-coup state… veiled women face discrimination – Freedom and Justice Portal

The British Broadcasting Corporation “BBC” published an investigation in which it shed light on the discrimination of veiled women in Egypt in public and tourist places, and reached the point of preventing entry, at a time when Abdel Fattah El-Sisi repeatedly rants about defending women’s rights.

According to the report, since 2015, some Egyptian women who wear the hijab have taken to social media to complain about such treatment.

problems at work

Mayar Omar, a 25-year-old executive research director from Cairo, says she has had “recurring problems going to some fine restaurants”.

“You want to feel yourself, when you enter a place and no one is forcing you to do something, or making you feel that you are a problem for the place or your friends,” she added.

On social media sites related to the hijab lifestyle, BBC News Arabic has found what appears to be a growing trend, with women accusing many places of refusing to enter them if they wear a hijab.

“In most cases the main reason is class, so we find discrimination against veiled women in places that want to present themselves as upper or upper middle class, but we also find discrimination against non-veiled women in lower and middle classes.

BBC News Arabic attempted to make reservations at 15 upscale venues across Cairo that were accused online of discrimination against women who wear the hijab.

Most venues requested social media profiles for all guests and 11 said no head coverings were allowed.

We sent a secret couple, with the woman who wears the hijab, to some places who told us they do not allow women who wear the hijab to enter.

At Le Aubergine in the upscale neighborhood of Zamalek, the doorman immediately told the couple that headscarves were forbidden because they had a bar inside, and that this might offend women who wear the veil.

The director was also adamant, saying “the headscarf is forbidden.”

When we were shown our recorded evidence, Le Aubergine told us it was inaccurate and that refusing women to wear headscarves is not a home rule, and we condemn that, as the venue told us, we have reiterated our hostel policies for staff to avoid any confusion in the future.

In Kazan, in the same neighbourhood, doormen told the couple again, “The problem is the veil.” When asked why, they simply said, “These are the rules of the place.”

At the final location, Andiamo in Heliopolis, the couple was initially denied entry, and after appeal, they were told they could enter, but they had to sit in a corner as the director said, “It is the instructions of the Ministry of Tourism, and if they find any veiled woman next to the bar, they will fine us.” .

Neither Kazan nor Andiamo responded to requests for comment.

Looking for an alternative

BBC News Arabic presented the evidence to Adel Al-Masry, head of the Chamber of Tourism Establishments and Restaurants.

He said, “Never during any period of the Ministry of Tourism has a decision been issued banning veiled women from recreational places. This is not acceptable. Discrimination is not acceptable, as these are public places.”

BBC News Arabic has also collected evidence that women wearing headscarves have been restricted from buying holiday apartments by major developer La Vista, which has projects in Cairo as well as several high-end coastal developments.

In the past it sold properties to veiled women, but our investigation found several posts on social media accusing La Vista of changing its policy and now placing restrictions on it.

A multinational executive told BBC News Arab how he contacted several real estate brokers to buy a property in La Vista, but they told him: “Sorry, La Vista is a bit tricky about the hijab.”

BBC News Arabic contacted six real estate brokers, posing as a buyer whose wife wears a headscarf and wanted to buy a unit in a coastal development in La Vista, told us it “would not be possible to buy a unit”.

One of them said to our undercover reporter, “Can I speak to you frankly? Definitely look for an alternative.”

Another went further, saying, “To be frank with you, regarding the North Coast and Sokhna projects, they are discriminatory.”

Explaining how the process works, one broker said, “They won’t say we won’t sell you a unit, but they’ll say this project you chose is now closed, and when it’s open, we’ll call you, and they won’t.”

Indeed, when our undercover reporter contacted La Vista saying that “his wife wears a headscarf, he was told he would be put on a waiting list and there were no properties available.”

Several weeks later he visited La Vista’s office, but this time he didn’t say his wife was wearing a hijab, he was told there were real estate units available immediately, and when he asked what kind of people lived there, the agent told him “The idea is that all the people we have look alike.” some.”

She stated that one of La Vista’s projects “has no veiled women at all”.

La Vista did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

“The Egyptian constitution is clear that discrimination of this kind is not allowed,” said Amira Saber, an Egyptian lawmaker who campaigned for women’s rights.

“I will certainly use one of my parliamentary tools to ask officials in the government, how can we ensure that this does not happen again, and if it does, the perpetrator should be punished,” she said.

Source: بوابة الحرية والعدالة by

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