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Group concerned over arrest of Egyptian transgender woman

March 7, 2019

CAIRO (AP) — An international rights group voiced concern Thursday for the safety and well-being of an Egyptian transgender woman arrested in a police raid on her home in Cairo.

Amnesty International said Malal el-Kashef was arrested Wednesday night.

“Due to her gender identity, Malak is at increased risk of torture by the police, including rape and sexual violence, as well as assault by other detainees,” said Magdalena Mughrabi, Amnesty’s deputy Middle East and North Africa director.

Mughrabi said el-Kashef’s arrest was related to her calls for protests following a Feb. 27 train crash in Cairo that killed at least 25 people. The London-based group said dozens of people have been arrested over anti-government protests related to the crash.

El-Kashef’s lawyer, Amr Mohamed, said state security prosecutors ordered el-Kashef held for 15 days on a charge of belonging to a terrorist group, a reference to the banned Muslim Brotherhood.

Amnesty has called for her release “immediately and unconditionally.”

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