Egyptian arrested for advertising son for sale on Facebook

Egypt man arrested for advertising infant son for sale on Facebook
2 min read
13 February, 2021
Egyptian police arrested a man who advertised his infant son for sale on Facebook, according to local media.
Police arrested the man after monitoring his online activities [Getty]
A man who attempted to sell his infant son on Facebook has been arrested by Egyptian authorities, local media reported on Saturday.

The father, who owns a timber shop in Egypt’s Giza, was caught following an operation by security forces who monitored his activities online, local Al Youm Al Sabea reported.

He offered a sum of money in an advert posted online.

The unidentified man said he forced into selling his child due to financial difficulties

According to the report, he had received responses from interested buyers.

Since the 2011 revolt that toppled former president Hosni Mubarak, the economy of the Arab world's most populous country has sustained multiple shocks caused by political instability and security issues.

The government has imposed harsh austerity measures in recent years to try to reduce its deficit, including cutting subsidies on fuel and electricity.

Some of these transformations have resulted in currency devaluation, increased inflation and a rise in unemployment.

The impact of economic reforms has been hardest on the poor, in a country where one in three live below the poverty line.

More families now rely on the government's social support program – which also has partnerships with private institutions and insurance companies, and includes Conditional Cash Transfers to vulnerable families.

Economy hit

Egypt's economy depends heavily on tourism, which accounts for some 12% of the gross domestic product. 

At the height of the COVID-19 pandemic last year, the IMF board approved a one-year, $5.2 billion financing package for Egypt to help the country alleviate the economic impact of the health crisis.

The new funding under a standby arrangement comes on top of $2.8 billion in emergency aid the IMF board approved a month ago, although at the time officials acknowledged that more help would be needed.

The IMF noted Cairo had "a strong track record" of implementing economic reforms under fund-supported programs over the past four years, and the new loan will help put it on strong footing for a recovery. 

Read also: Iraqi man, woman arrested for 'attempting to sell five-year-old son’ 

"Egypt was one of the fastest-growing emerging markets prior to the COVID-19 outbreak," the IMF said in a statement.

"However, the significant domestic and global disruptions from the pandemic have worsened the economic outlook and reshuffled policy priorities."

The aid will focus first on health and social spending, as well as financial stability to keep a lid on inflation.

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