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The most recent wave of arrests started last September after an audience member unfurled a gay pride flag at a rock concert, something the regime took as a personal insult.More than 75 people were arrested on debauchery charges in the weeks that followed.The Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights (EIPR) has documented more than 230 LGBTQ-related arrests from October 2013 to March 2017, which is more than in the previous 13 years combined.For those in the community, the threat of violence is hard to escape.He was taken to the Forensic Authority, where doctors examined his anus for signs of sexual activity, but there was still no real evidence of a crime.After three weeks, he was convicted of crimes related to debauchery and sentenced to a year in prison.
They beat him regularly and made sure the other inmates knew what he was in for.
“I froze as a human being for a while,” one Egyptian called Omar told me. There were so many horrific stories about people being imprisoned or blackmailed or put under some sort of pressure for their sexuality.
It was disturbing.” Egypt’s state media has largely cheered on the crackdown, treating a 2014 raid on the Bab al-Bahr bathhouse as more of a tabloid drama than a human rights issue.
Firas knew something was wrong when he saw the checkpoint.
He was meeting a man in Dokki’s Mesaha Square, a tree-lined park just across the Nile from Cairo, for what was supposed to be a romantic rendezvous.
“They caught me and beat me up, insulting me with the worst words possible. I was scared to be hit on my face so I gave in.” He was taken to the Mogamma, an immense government building on Tahrir Square that houses Egypt’s General Directorate for Protecting Public Morality.