In the run up to Eid, raids arresting alleged male prostitutes are making the news.
As part of pre-Eid 'morality' campaigns becoming more and more common sight in Egypt, police forces have arrested 11 ‘homosexuals’, who are accused of offering sexual services in Cairo. The men were arrested in two apartments in Agouza, where sex toys and women’s clothing were found, according to state-owned newspaper Al-Ahram.
The men are accused of being part of a network that offered sex for EGP 1,500 an hour, acquiring clients through social media. Egyptian police have often used social networks to target homosexual men, especially through the use of phone apps such as Grindr and Growlr, where officers arrange to meet men only to arrest them.
Campaigns to raid cafes and nightclubs that operate without appropriate licenses have been intensified according to the Ministry of Interior. The campaign will also aim at tackling harassment and tackling public disorder in streets and public areas during Eid.
As part of the raids, police also caught a civilian pilot with two prostitutes at an apartment in Mohandessin. Earlier in September, local news reported on the arrest of a man by the same moral police team led by the Ministry’s general directorate of investigations, Major General Ahmed Shafie. The man arrested, is accused of having allegedly engaged in homosexuality with men for money. The man was caught using social media as well.
Even though there is no Egyptian law against homosexuality, arrests of homosexual men under charges of debauchery or immorality have become a common occurrence
Last January, a Cairo court acquitted 26 defendants accused of homosexual activities in a bath house, in a case that gained notoriety as TV host Mona Iraqi sparked national outrage by a coverage in which she pointed to a “gay bath house orgy.” Despite the acquittal, one of the men reportedly set himself on fire later, allegedly because of the intense social attacks she was subject to.