Samira Ibrahim

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Graffiti reproducing Samira Ibrahim's face.

Samira Ibrahim (Arabic: سميرة إبراهيم‎‎, IPA: [sæˈmiːɾæ ebɾˤɑˈhiːm]) (born c. 1987) is an Egyptian activist who came to prominence during the Egyptian revolution.

Tahrir sit-in and aftermath[edit]

On March 9, 2011, she participated in a sit-in at Tahrir Square in Cairo. The military violently dispersed protest participants, and Samira and other women were beaten, given electric shocks, strip searched, and videotaped by the soldiers. They were also subjected to virginity tests. The tests were allegedly carried out to protect the soldiers from claims of rape.

After succeeding in placing the case in front of a civilian court, a court order was issued in December 2011 to stop the practice of “virginity tests”. However, in March 2012, a military court exonerated Dr. Adel El Mogy from charges laid in connection with the virginity testing of Ibrahim.[1][2][3]

Ibrahim vowed to take her case to the international courts.[4]

2013 Twitter allegations[edit]

In early March 2013, Ibrahim came under criticism after Samuel Tadros, writing in The Weekly Standard, accused her of posting anti-Semitic and anti-American statements on her Twitter account. These statements included quoting Adolf Hitler, writing: "I have discovered with the passage of days, that no act contrary to morality, no crime against society, takes place, except with the Jews having a hand in it. Hitler.” In reaction to a suicide bombing of a bus of Israelis in Bulgaria, she wrote "Today is a very sweet day with a lot of very sweet news.”[5] In 2012 on the anniversary of the September 11 terrorist attacks, she tweeted "Today is the anniversary of 9/11. May every year come with America burning".[6][7][8]

The American State Department subsequently announced that it will not be giving the International Women of Courage Award to her in light of these comments.[9][10]

Initially, Ibrahim claimed that her Twitter account had been "previously stolen" and that "any tweet on racism and hatred is not me”.[5] However, she later stated "I refuse to apologize to the Zionist lobby in America regarding my previous anti-Zionist statements under pressure from American government therefore they withdrew the award."[11] The U.S. State Department later stated that Ibrahim had since left the United States to return to Egypt.[12][13]

On March 8, 2013, a spokeswoman for the U.S. State Department stated that "Upon further review, the department has decided not to present her with the award" as American officials "didn't consider some of the public statements that she had made appropriate. They didn't comport with our values" while adding that "There were obviously some problems in our review process, and we're going to do some forensics on how that happened."[14]

Awards and recognitions[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "What made her go there? Samira Ibrahim and Egypt's virginity test trial". Retrieved 2013-05-19. 
  2. ^ Craggs, Ryan (March 11, 2012). "Ahmed Adel, Egyptian Military 'Virginity Test' Doctor, Acquitted". Retrieved 2013-05-19. 
  3. ^ The World's 100 Most Influential People: 2012 - Samira Ibrahim by Charlize Theron, Time Magazine, Wednesday, April 18, 2012.
  4. ^ Abdel-Rahman Hussein in Cairo (March 13, 2012). "'The future of Egyptian women is in danger' - Samira Ibrahim speaks out". London: Guardian. Retrieved 2013-05-19. 
  5. ^ a b Samuel Tadros (March 6, 2013). "Michelle Obama and John Kerry to Honor Anti-Semite and 9/11 Fan". Weekly Standard. Archived from the original on March 24, 2013. 
  6. ^ "Michelle Malkin Takes on State Department for Honoring Samira Ibrahim, Woman Who Praised 9/11". Fox News. March 7, 2013. 
  7. ^ "Activist Samira Ibrahim denied International Women of Courage prize over anti-US tweets". Associated Press (reprinted in The Indian Express). March 8, 2013. 
  8. ^ The tweets that cost Samira Ibrahim her State Department award by Caitlin Dewey, Washington Post, March 8, 2013.
  9. ^ "US postpones award to honor Egyptian woman activist in light of anti-US, anti-Semitic tweets". Washington Post. Associated Press. [dead link]
  10. ^ "US revokes award for Egyptian woman due to tweets". 8 March 2012. Retrieved 8 March 2012. 
  11. ^ Samira Ibrahim 'Refuses to Apologize' for Her Tweets by Jeffrey Goldberg, The Atlantic, March 7, 2013.
  12. ^ "Samira Ibrahim acknowledges ‘anti-Zionist’ tweet". Jewish Telegraphic Agency (JTA). March 8, 2013. 
  13. ^ "Samira Ibrahim". 
  14. ^ "US cancels award for Samira Ibrahim after incendiary tweets". Egypt Independent. March 9, 2013.