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Egyptian TV presenter slammed for claiming murdered student should have worn veil

LONDON: Social media users have slammed an Egyptian TV presenter who claimed murdered student Nayera Ashraf was responsible for not wearing a veil.

In a video message, Mabrouk Attia, who is also a professor of Islamic Sharia at Al-Azhar University in Cairo, suggested that women should “cover up completely” if they do not want to “meet the same fate” as the student at Mansoura University.

“Pursue. Untie your hair and wear tight clothes. (Men) will hunt you down and kill you. Carry on – personal freedom,” Attia, 63, said in the clip.

“A woman must be veiled to live. She should wear loose clothes so as not to provoke… you are in the midst of monsters. If your life is precious to you, let your house look like a burlap sack,” the presenter added.

A number of women’s rights advocates, the National Council of Women and social media users have condemned Attia’s statements and filed formal complaints with the Attorney General, accusing him of several legal offenses, including “dating incitement to hate speech and violence against women”.

In a tweet, one user said: “This is how Mabrouk Attia reacted to the senseless massacre of Nayera Ashraf. This crazy sociopath is a disgrace and has nothing to do with Islam. Blaming the victim is false nonsense.

Another shared the video on Twitter and said, “This video contains hate speech, incitement to crime, justifying and promoting terrorism against every woman who dares to leave her home.”

Another social media post said, “Mabrouk Attia is a shameful victim who blames Nayera Achraf for not wearing the hijab. We are always told “cover up”, “don’t provoke men”, “be modest”. It is never about teaching men how to behave and respect women. We refuse to live in fear,” another user said.

Al-Azhar University distanced itself from Attia’s comments.

Later, in a video posted to his official Facebook page, Attia said he would suspend his social media accounts following the backlash.

Ashraf was stabbed to death Monday in broad daylight by a man as she got off a bus outside the University of Central Egypt.

Her father claimed his daughter had been stalked more than once by the suspect, allegedly upset after he refused to marry her.