An Egyptian lawyer has come under fire for suggesting that men have a ‘patriotic duty’ to rape women who wear ripped jeans.
Nabih al-Wahsh is a well-known conservative commentator in Egypt, who appeared on current affairs talk show the Infrad Show to discuss a proposed new law on prostitution.
The Independent reports that al-Wahsh asked the other panelists: “Are you happy when you see a girl walking down the street with half of her behind showing?
“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.”
He added: “Girls must respect themselves so others respect them.
“Protecting morals is more important than protecting borders.”
Mr al-Wahsh’s remarks have sparked outrage around the country and Egypt’s National Council for Women announced it is planning a complaint against the TV network.
The council also issued a plea for media outlets to refrain from giving a platform to those who make comments suggesting violence against women.
In a statement, they said: “All the members of the council denounce and decry this statement that explicitly promotes rape and sexual harassment.”
A 2008 study found that 83 per cent of Egyptian women said they had been sexually harassed and 53 per cent of men blamed women for “bringing it on themselves”.
Mr al-Wahsh made headlines late last year after his debate with a cleric resulted in a fight, with the two men smashing into a glass panel.
He is also reported to have said that he opposed to women serving as judges, arguing that they could also become muftis.
Mufti’s are Muslim legal experts who have the power to give rulings on religious issues.
He said: “If we let a woman become a judge, why shouldn’t she become Sheik of Al-Azhar? Why shouldn’t she become the Mufti? Why don’t we all just go to Hell?! Will she issue me a fatwa while she is menstruating?!”