Army doctor cleared of ‘virginity test’ charge

An Egyptian military tribunal has acquitted an army doctor of public obscenity after a protester claimed she was forced to undergo a virginity test while in detention.

The court denied the humiliating tests even took place, despite a ruling by another court and admissions by generals quoted by a leading rights group.

The ruling further infuriated the country’s revolutionary youth movements, who have said claims of the virginity tests were the first sign that the generals who took over from deposed president Hosni Mubarak 13 months ago were carrying on his repressive practices.

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Less than four months before the military is scheduled to hand over power to a civilian administration, yesterday’s verdict is likely to increases suspicions that the generals are trying to remove any legal basis for prosecution for crimes committed during their rule after they step down. Activists are calling for the generals to face charges for human rights abuses.

Samira Ibrahim, one of seven women who said they were forced to undergo examinations to determine if they were virgins while detained by the military a year ago, won a civilian court ruling last year that affirmed the tests were taking place at military jails.

Military prosecutors investigating her accusations brought only one individual, Dr Ahmed Adel, to trial, and he was acquitted.

“No one stained my honour,” Ms Ibrahim wrote on her Twitter account after the verdict. “The one that had her honour stained is Egypt. I will carry on until I restore Egypt’s rights.”

Major General Adel al-Mursi, head of the military prosecution, defended the verdict. He said the judge ruled “according to his conscience and in view of the case’s documents.”