Egyptian lawyer who said national duty to rape women in ripped jeans sentenced to three years in prison

Cairo - An Egyptian lawyer has been sentenced to three years in prison for declaring women who wear ripped jeans should be raped as a “national duty”.

Nabih al-Wahsh, a prominent conservative who has previously stoked controversy, was also fined 20,000 Egyptian pounds (£839).

The lawyer sparked outrage for making the controversial comments during a TV panel show discussion in October debating a draft law on prostitution.

"Are you happy when you see a girl walking down the street with half of her behind showing?" he said on Al-Assema. 

He added: “I say that when a girl walks about like that, it is a patriotic duty to sexually harass her and a national duty to rape her.”

Mr al-Wahsh said women who wore revealing clothing were "inviting men to harass them" and said "protecting morals is more important than protecting borders".

The lawyer’s remarks sparked fury across the country and Egypt’s National Council for Women announced it would be filing a complaint against the TV channel. It issued a plea for media outlets to refrain from providing a platform for individuals who make incendiary comments that incite violence against women.

The National Council said the remarks were a "flagrant call" for rape and in violation of "everything in the Egyptian constitution". Maya Morsi, head of the council, argued his remarks constituted an actual violation of the Egyptian constitution that makes explicit efforts to safeguard women’s rights. 

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