Raya and Sakina

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Sakina (left) and Raya (right).[1]

Raya and Sakina (Arabic:ريا و سكينة ), Egypt's most infamous serial killers, began killing women in the Labban neighborhood of Alexandria in the early days of the 20th century. The police were plagued by increasing reports of missing women. Common details in the reports included the missing person's sex (all were females), the missing women were known to be wearing gold jewelry, and were known to be carrying a large amount of money. Another common detail was the report that many of the missing women were last seen with a woman called Sakina. Sakina was questioned several times because of the reports, but she managed to dodge any suspicions about her involvement.

On the morning of December 11, 1920 a passerby discovered human remains on the side of the road; the body was damaged beyond recognition (except for its long hair) and was completely dismembered. There was also a piece of black cloth and a striped black-and-white pair of socks near the body, however, these items did not help with the identification of the remains. In an unrelated incident, at about the same time in December, a man reported finding human remains beneath his floor while digging to fix a water pipe.

Those findings provided the only evidence regarding the murders in the Labban neighborhood. After investigation, it was found that Raya and Sakina had been renting a home, where the bodies were buried, at the time when the women and girls disappeared.

Raya and Sakina and their husbands were tried for murder. All four were convicted and were sentenced to death on 16 May 1921. Raya and Sakina became the first Egyptian women to be executed by the modern state of Egypt.

Crime scenes[edit]

Four homes where the crimes had been committed were all located near Mansheya Square. Most of the victims came from this area.

The addresses of the homes:

  • No. 5 Makoris Street near the Labban Bakery.
  • No. 38 Ali Bay Elkebeer Street.
  • No. 6 El Negah Lane.
  • No. 8 El Negah Lane.

Raya and Sakina in the media[edit]

Inspired by the story of the Raya and Sakina, many books and works of art have been published.

  • Raya and Sakina a film production from 1953 that stars Negma Ibrahim, Zouzou Hamdy El-Hakim, Farid Shawki, Anwar Wagdi, Shoukry Sarhan, Samira Ahmed and Berlanty Abdel Hamid, and was directed by Salah Abu Seif.
  • Ismail Yasin meets Raya and Sakina a film production from 1955 that stars Ismail Yasin, Negma Ibrahim, Zouzou Hamdy El-Hakim, Abdel Fattah Qasri and Reyad El Kasabgy, and was directed by Hamada Abdel Wahab.
  • Raya and Sakina a film production from 1983 that stars Sharihan, Younis Shalabi and Hassan Abdeen.
  • Raya and Sakina the theatrical production from 1985 that starred Sohair El Babli, Shadia, Abdel Moneim Madbouly and Ahmed Bedier.
  • Raya and Sakina, a television series that ran in 2005, it stars Abla Kamel, Somaya El Khashab, Sami Al Adel, Ahmed Maher, Salah Abdallah, and Ryad El Khouly, and was directed by Gamal Abdel Hamid.
  • There was also a television program entitled: Raya and Sakina, presented by Hala Fakher and Ghada Abdel-Razek.


  1. ^ L. Rizk, Yunan. "The women killers". Al-Ahram Weekly. Retrieved 20 April 2015.