'Virginity Tests': Female Detainees in Egypt Forced to Submit to Horrid Practice

Women say they were strip-searched, photographed naked, beaten and forced to undergo "virginity tests" on threat of prostitution charges.

Egyptian protester stands underneath national flag.

Lauren Frayer of AOL News is reporting that disturbing details are emerging about the treatment of some young female protesters briefly detained by Egyptian soldiers. At least 18 women were captured and held in military detention after army officers violently cleared Cairo's Tahrir Square on March 9, nearly a month after pro-democracy protesters ousted President Hosni Mubarak from power. After their release days later, several of them complained to Amnesty International about their treatment.

Some of the women say they were strip-searched, photographed naked, beaten and forced to undergo "virginity tests" on threat of prostitution charges.

Amnesty International issued a report of the allegations Wednesday, calling on the Egyptian government to investigate such claims of torture.

One of the women is Salwa Hosseini, 20, who said she was arrested and taken to a military prison, where she and other women were forced to take off their clothes. They were searched by a female prison guard, she said, but male soldiers were able to look inside through two open doors and a window -- and snap photos of the degraded prisoners. In a different room, she said, a man in a white lab coat subjected them to "virginity tests" and threatened that those who didn't "pass" would be charged with prostitution.

For one of the girls who claimed to be a virgin, the test purportedly declared otherwise -- and she was then tortured with beatings and electric shocks.

"Forcing women to have 'virginity tests' is utterly unacceptable," Amnesty International said. "Its purpose is to degrade women because they are women. All members of the medical profession must refuse to take part in such so-called tests."

Amnesty continued: "Women and girls must be able to express their views on the future of Egypt and protest against the government without being detained, tortured or subjected to profoundly degrading and discriminatory treatment."

Everyone is so focused on the spread of democracy in North Africa and the Middle East, but whose democracy are we championing? How do we align ourselves with governments that allow women to be subjected to torture for challenging dominant ideologies and practices, many of which are rooted in patriarchy and their continued subjugation and denigration? Murdering your people outside of this country requires U.S. military intervention, but raping, abusing and torturing women doesn't? Senseless.

Read more at AOL News.

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