Amending sexual harassment law for tougher punishments
Secretary general of the National Council for Women (NCW) Margret Azer - YOUM7
By DALIA FAROUK

CAIRO: Regarding amending the sexual harassment law, “we need to toughen punishment against these crimes,” secretary general of the National Council for Women (NCW) Margret Azer told The Cairo Post Tuesday.

Azer said amending the law is part of many factors that will help confront the increasing issue of sexual harassment.

She said the law will play a very important part in confront sexual harassment because people will fear the punishment, which will stop them from harassing women.

“There is lack of morals and amending sexual harassment law is a positive step that will play a vital role in confronting sexual harassment,” Azer said.

NCW adopted the amendment and called to improve the law, according to the press release on March 18.

Assistant Minister of Justice for Human Rights Ahmad Sirgany presented a memorandum to Minister Nair Osman Tuesday about amending the sexual harassment law.

The amendments include making an exact definition for sexual harassment, increasing punishment for these charges, and raising the value of the convicts’ fines.

Sirgany told Youm7 that officials are discussing amending the law to approve it as soon as possible after taking the necessary measures to make it suitable for the new 2014 constitution.

He said the amendment was made after the incident of the group that sexually harassed a Cairo University student on March 16.

The amendment includes paragraph A in article 306 defining sexual harassment as “anyone who incurs other people, in general or private areas, by following them and using gestures, words, modern communications, or another methods with sexual connotations or obscene incentives.”

Sirgany also said the previous penalty for harassment varied between six months to two years and a fine between 500 to 2,000 EGP. After the amendment, the detention will be no less than one year and will not exceed 10 years, with a fine more than 10,000 EGP and less than 20,000 EGP.

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