CAIRO: The Ministry of Social Solidarity will soon start to receive victims of sexual harassment in its “women hosting centers,” according to a decision by Social Solidarity Minister Ghada Wali, Youm7 reported Thursday.
In her Thursday statements, Wali announced a decision to amend the working regulations of nine women hosting centers across eight governorates to provide harassment victims with social, medical, legal and psychological care.
These decisions come under the framework of a memorandum signed by the ministry and the National Council for Women aimed at empowering Egyptian women, Wali added.
The punishment for sexual harassers was toughened under amendments adopted by former interim President Adly Mansour, and assaulters now face up to five years in prison.
Two defendants were sentenced on Aug. 7 to life in prison over charges of mob sexual assault and attempted murder in Tahrir Square that occurred in early June, while another was sentenced to 20 years in prison.
On July 16, South Cairo Criminal Court sentenced seven defendants to life imprisonment and another two to 20 years in prison over the same charges. Three of the defendants were also fined 10,000 EGP ($1,400).
A 2013 United Nations study found that 99.3 percent of Egyptian women have been sexually harassed.
Additional reporting by Medhat Wahba