Egyptian singer sentenced to 2 years over racy video

Faith Castro
December 14, 2017

The director of the video was also fined and sentenced to two years in prison, but in absentia.

Ahmed, better known for her stage name Shyma, was convicted by an Egyptian court to two years and prison and a United States dollars 560 fine, for her provocative behavior in the video for her song, "I Have Issues".

She is seen dancing in her underwear before appearing in front of a room full of men with #Class69 scrawled on the blackboard. Her trial in The Misdemeanour Court in Cairo began on November 28 where she pleaded not guilty to charges of "inciting debauchery and producing a video that harms public morality".

Ahmed can appeal the ruling, but there's no reason to think it will get overturned.

"Singer Shyma presents a lesson in depravity to youths", Youm 7, an Egyptian newspaper, wrote in an article following the video's release.

In a Facebook post at the time, Shyma apologised for the video and said she had not anticipated the backlash.

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Shyma is only the latest Egyptian artist to be prosecuted for "inciting debauchery" with sexually explicit music videos.

Since President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi came to power in 2014, authorities have used wide-ranging morality laws to clamp down on freedom of expression.

The director of the music video for her song, "I Have Issues" was also sentenced to two years in prison, the BBC reported.

In 2015, a court jailed a female dancer for a year for "inciting debauchery" in a raunchy music video for a song called "Let Go of My Hand".

Ten Egyptians were arrested in September for attending a concert in Cairo at which the rainbow flag, a symbol for the global LGBTQ community, was raised.

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