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Egypt woman commits suicide after husband threatens to share nude pictures online

A woman checks on her phone an Instagram account for reporting allegations of sexual harassment and misconduct [KHALED DESOUKI/AFP via Getty Images]
A woman checks on her phone an Instagram account for reporting allegations of sexual harassment and misconduct [KHALED DESOUKI/AFP via Getty Images]

An Egyptian woman has killed herself after her husband threatened to share intimate pictures and videos of her online.

The husband was blackmailing her to waive legal rights to his money and furniture if they got divorced, reports the Gulf News.

The human rights organisation Belady has said that electronic blackmail has grown extensively in Egypt over recent months in which indecent pictures and videos of women are shared online for the purpose of sexually exploiting them.

This latest suicide follows a case that went viral in January in which a 17-year-old woman committed suicide after doctored images which made her look as though she was naked were shared online.

One of the two men accused had asked Basant Khaled out and when she refused, created, and shared the photos.

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As the photos circulated, Basant was bullied by teachers and classmates and eventually became so depressed that she took her own life.

Less than a month later 15-year-old Heidi Shehta Abdel Fattah committed suicide after her neighbours fabricated pictures of her and threatened to share them online unless Heidi's family pay. Al-Arabiya reported that the family sold most of their belongings to pay the men who blackmailed them and try and prevent them from publishing the pictures, but this was not enough to stop Heidi from committing suicide.

In July 2020 a former Egyptian AUC student was accused of sexual harassment and rape by dozens of young women, one of whom said Ahmed Zaki blackmailed her and her sister and threatened to photoshop a picture of them and turn them into "fake nudes".

One woman said he used intimate photos of her to blackmail her into having sex with him and said that if she did not, he would send them to their parents.

Allegations against Zaki went viral and sparked Egypt's #MeToo movement under which hundreds of women gained the confidence to speak out about the sexual harassment they have been subjected to.

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