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Egypt to free Lebanese woman jailed after harassment claim

Mona al-Mazbouh was arrested in late May at Cairo airport (Getty)

Date of publication: 9 September, 2018

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A Lebanese woman was permitted to leave Egypt after formally being jailed for complaining about harassment in the country.
Egypt will free a Lebanese woman jailed for eight years for "harming" its people after claiming in a video to have been sexually assaulted, a judicial source said Sunday.

Tourist Mona al-Mazbouh was arrested in late May at Cairo airport as she was preparing to leave Egypt, and she was jailed for eight years in July.

She had published a video on Facebook, which was widely shared, saying she had been the victim of sexual harassment in the streets and accusing Egyptians of sealing.

She appealed the verdict and it was accepted by a Cairo court, the judicial source said.

The court also reduced her sentence to a one-year suspended jail term.

Her lawyer, Emad Kamal, said that Mazbouh would be able to leave Egypt "within days" after paying 30,000 Egyptian pounds (around $1,670, 1,450 euros) in fines.

Initially the prosecution had accused her of "spreading false rumours and undermining religions" before finding her guilty of "harming the Egyptian people".

Mazbouh's allegations drew angry reactions online, with some Egyptian calling for her arrest and lodging a complaint against her.

But she released a second video insisting she had not meant to insult the country as a whole.

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