Presidential Advisor on Foreign Relations Essam Al-Haddad claimed in a statement on Saturday that the crowds in Tahrir Square are “out of control.”
He noted the case of a Dutch journalist who was allegedly gang raped near the square, one of seven cases which took place there last Friday.
“These criminal acts do not appear to be politically motivated or controlled,” he added.
Coordinator at I Saw Harassment, Fathi Farid, said there were only two cases of sexual harassment in Tahrir Square last Friday, adding that only one of the cases required medical care.
Farid added that Al-Haddad neglected to mention that the first to share these videos of the protests were members of the Muslim Brotherhood, who blamed this situation on the “seculars.”
Operation Anti Sexual Harassment (OpAntiSH) however gave a different figure, claiming five cases of sexual harassment in Tahrir Square last Friday. Nazra for Feminist Studies stated that one of those cases was a foreigner, who was saved in an ambulance that drove her outside the square.
Al-Haddad opened his statement by describing both factions of the protest, the supporters of Morsi in Rabaa Al-Adaweya Square and opposition in Tahrir Square, as peaceful.
He described the recent clashes in Alexandria as initiated by “armed men who were participating in an opposition procession.” He claimed that American citizen Andrew Pochter who was stabbed to death in Alexandria was murdered by “these same gangsters.” Pochter died in an ambulance on Friday after being stabbed in the back while watching protests in Alexandria. He was an English teacher.
Al-Haddad alleged that at recent clashes in Mansoura, Beheira and Alexandria, armed gangs attacked the Muslim Brotherhood and Freedom and Justice Party figures and offices. “Individual members of the Brotherhood have been attacked with automatic weapons and shotguns,” he said.
He added that it is very important that protesters “separate themselves from the thugs that use them as cover.”