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Student protest against “Harassment Minister”

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Students reject the minister’s presence at a conference, calling him a ‘harasser’

A group of students protested in front of the faculty of Mass Communication at Cairo University against Information Minister Salah Abdel Maqsoud. (Photo courtesy of Facebook)

A group of students protested in front of the faculty of Mass Communication at Cairo University against Information Minister Salah Abdel Maqsoud.
(Photo courtesy of Facebook)

A group of students protested in front of the faculty of Mass Communication at Cairo University against Information Minister Salah Abdel Maqsoud.

Students gathered on Tuesday morning and chanted against the minister, calling him a “harasser”.

“We will not host a harasser in our faculty, he should be removed for what he said, not invited to a conference,” said Dina, a senior student at the faculty and one of the protesters.

Students chanted against the minister, the Muslim Brotherhood and President Mohamed Morsi. They demanded the removal of the minister, calling him “a disgrace”.

Abdel Maqsoud was supposed to attend the opening of a conference part of a Media and Information Literacy and Intercultural Dialogue week titled “Media and the Culture of Democracy”, but cancelled his visit to the faculty on Tuesday.

Earlier in April the minister faced allegations of verbally sexually harassing a reporter at an event. Nada Mohamed, a journalist for the Hoqook news website, was shocked by the minister’s answers when she asked him “Mr Minister, where is this freedom [of the press] when journalists are dying and getting beaten everywhere?”

His answer was “Come here and I’ll tell you where,” which carries a sexual connotation in Egyptian colloquial Arabic.

The protest ended as soon as the students were informed the minister would not be attending the conference.

“Minister of Culture Mohamed Saber Arab was also supposed to attend but he didn’t” said Asmaa, a teaching assistant at the faculty and a member of the event’s organising committee.

A report by state-owned Egypt News stated that Abdel Maqsoud was not invited to attend the conference and that he was inspecting a radio and television institute in Downtown Cairo.

The conference ends on 25 April and features discussions on studies and research papers for more than 60 international experts and scholars and is taking place under the auspices of Cairo University President Hossam Kamel along with the ministers of information and culture.


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