A Tunisian woman who was allegedly raped by police faces up to six months in prison for indecent exposure.
Thousands of Tunisians have protested in the capital, Tunis, in August against moves by the Islamist-led government which they fear will reduce women’s rights. (BBC)
Tunisian authorities must drop indecency charges against a woman who was summoned to court on Wednesday after she had complained that police officers raped her earlier this month, Amnesty International said.
The woman and her fiancé, who prefer to remain anonymous, could be imprisoned for up to six months for “intentional indecent behavior” stemming from claims – by the very same police officers charged with raping her – that they were found in an “immoral position” in public in the capital Tunis.
The couple deny the charges and their court hearing is due to resume on October 2.
“At best, charging the victim of a rape by police officers instead of protecting her from intimidation and stigma highlights the deep flaws on Tunisian law and criminal justice system. At worst, it is an insidious attempt to discredit a rape victim and protect those she accused of raping her,” said Hassiba Hadj Sahraoui, Deputy Middle East and North Africa Program Director at Amnesty International.
“Rape by security forces – often used as a tool of repression – is a form of torture, and must be promptly and fully investigated and, if there is sufficient admissible evidence, prosecuted.”