African Women Voices
CAIRO, EGYPT— The area between the Hardee’s and Pizza Hut, on a dark and narrow road off of Tahrir Square, has become known as the “Bermuda Triangle.” This is where women’s bodies seem to disappear into the chaos and anger ripping through protesting crowds.
From above, a mob sexual assault in Tahrir looks like a hurricane, picking up speed and engulfing women in a flash — their screams drowned out amid the roar of protesters’ chants.
On the ground, the damage that’s done in a matter of minutes drags on in slow motion — as familiar faces melt into the melee, leaving victims alone with grasping hands.
The women emerge, “naked, bruised, and traumatized,” as ambulance drivers and paramedics described the four sexually assaulted women they’d seen in Tahrir Square the previous week. While these uniformed men admit that “it’s our duty to help everyone,” they also provide an ever-so-thoughtful solution to lessen the burden on everyone: “Girls shouldn’t be in this crowd with men.”
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