Egypt May Allow “Citizen’s Arrest” of Western Tourists for Blasphemy

Daniel Greenfield, a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the Freedom Center, is a New York writer focusing on radical Islam. He is completing a book on the international challenges America faces in the 21st century.


Egypt’s tourism sector was doing really badly, so the Muslim Brotherhood regime decided to finish it off. I don’t recall even the Saudis allowing freelance blasphemy arrests. And this is taking place in a country where much of the population thinks that being a member of a non-Islamic religion is blasphemy and being a Westerner means you are a spy.

So come to beautiful Egypt. If you don’t get attacked by a mob making a citizen’s arrest, you’ll get attacked by a rape mob and if you don’t encounter any of these, you get a t-shirt that says, “I Survived Egypt.”

The Egyptian prosecutor general for the Muslim Brotherhood regime (their equivalent of our Attorney General, Eric Holder) has enacted a new law permitting ordinary Egyptians to make what amounts to carte blanche arrests of foreigners in Egypt for things like suspicion of ‘spying’ or blasphemy, or pretty much anything else that goes against Egypt’s sharia based legal code:

Egypt’s Coalition to Support Tourism (CST) condemns the prosecutor-general’s decision to allow citizens’ arrests announced on Sunday, arguing it raises many worries among tourists.

Many tourism agents called the head of the CST, Ehab Moussa in alarm. He told Ahram Online that they wanted to confirm the rumour over what they feel is a strange decision.

“If a tourist rebuffed an Egyptian merchant, refusing to buy something, the merchant might accuse the tourist of spying and arrest him,” he said.

Moussa claims that tourists would then be mistreated and blackmailed in Egypt.

Only Islamist political powers, represented by the Freedom and Justice Party and Al-Gamaa Al-Islamiya, welcomed the decision as an attempt to curb the security deterioration in the country.

Egypt has fallen to the lowest rank out of 140 countries in terms of safety and security, just behind Pakistan, Chad and Yemen, in the World Economic Forum (WEF)’s Travel and Tourism (T&T) competitiveness index released last week.

So if you have to choose between a tourism trip to Pakistan or Egypt, jump into the ocean. It worked for the Israelites.

  • UCSPanther

    This has "legalized kidnapping" written all over it.

  • WilliamJamesWard

    It also has "Stupid move" written all over it. I have friends who just came back from a tour
    which included Egypt, something I hoped they would not do but they said the tourist
    lovers in Egypt kept a close watch on them. This news would have given me apoplexy
    and I am glad they are home and it is over. I would not go there for any reason and
    plead with all I know to stay away from Islamist controlled lands as thier lives are surely
    in danger, it is apparent and violence in Islam is epidemic……………………..William

    • http://www.adinakutnicki.com AdinaK

      Anyone who goes to these Islamic hotbeds, ruled by Sharia Law, should expect that their lives will be in danger. We are talking about a "religion" which has certified cannibalism ! as acceptable doctrine – http://adinakutnicki.com/2013/02/06/islam-barbari

      This is a regime (like most in the region) which is ruled by the Brotherhood Mafia, and is an offshoot of Al Qaeda. The same Islamists the POTUS champions inside Washington, as well as all over the Middle East.

      Glad to hear your friend made it home in one piece!

      Adina Kutnicki, Israel http://adinakutnicki.com/about/

      • WilliamJamesWard

        It would seem the White House is an Islamic hotbed………If people want to travel
        and see something they should go to Israel and Jerusalem…….and be safe…..William

  • Edward Cline

    Best advice to people who want to see the Pyramids and all that other stuff: buy a picture book, go on the Internet and look at all the things the Brotherhood wants to destroy anyway. But don't go there. Boycott the place.

    • Paris Adel

      Dear Edward…I am married to a Muslim man in Egypt, and have stayed with him and his family on each and every visit…I am due to return to him this summer, and NOW he speaks of me(I am a Christian American girl)slapping on a burquka , due to security measures….I didn't even realize how much WORSE it has gotten over there with the Christians, and now to see THIS? I need to listen to God and leave everything in HIS HANDS..not the JHads…..

  • Adobe_Walls

    If they are going to claim that unrest is caused by foreign agents than they must do something about those agents.

    • kafir4life

      As a foreign agent, I'll do my part by not going to Egypt.

  • BS77

    Egypt is a very dangerous country for Western tourists.

    • http://twitter.com/morrisadams76 @morrisadams76

      thank god racism is dead, they won't be able to tell if you're western! good for that!!

  • Spikey1

    I composed a list of the top five reasons to visit Egypt:

    1.
    2.
    3.
    4.
    5.

    There, all done…. Would anyone like to see my list for Libya?

    • http://twitter.com/morrisadams76 @morrisadams76

      i would imagine if you put your mind to it you could come up with 10! very funny

    • Gcbc

      I long time ago I had friends who went to Egypt. The army immediately surrounded them and they had military protection where ever they went. The reason. being unusual looking Western twins, they would be valuable on the slave market. I knew someone who traveled to Israel and one other mid-east country. Somebody there offered to buy her for at least 10 camels. He wanted her as a second wife. No conversation was held with the women in these instances. It was all with men who happened to accompany the groups.

  • http://twitter.com/MohamedSalama11 @MohamedSalama11

    Folks, I just wanna say that the Muslim Brotherhood regime doesn't represent the majority of people in Egypt. I know it sounds odd and stupid, but believe it or not, this regime really doesn't represent the people anymore. Everyday thousands of "civilized liberal Egyptians" protest what this stupid regime is doing to Egypt.
    The Muslim Brotherhood wants to turn Egypt in a new Iran, and that's something the Egyptian people won't accept. After the revolution we wanted our country to be a new civilized country that welcomes everyone, an Islamist-free..a country without extremism. Again, the Muslim Brotherhood and Islamists don't represent the Egyptian people. Believe me, we want to get rid of them more than you do.

    I really do hope you can visit my beautiful county in better circumstances!

    • kafir4life

      Not a chance Mo. Get rid of the muslims, then maybe.

    • Spikey1

      Oops you had a typo in the last line – I corrected it for you:

      I really do hope you can visit my beautiful county so we can kidnap you!

    • Ric Gerace

      It doesn't matter whether the MB represents the majority of Egyptians. What matters is that the MB is in charge, is running the government, and making the rules, and controls the military and paramilitary apparats. Nor does it matter how many Egyptians oppose the regime. What matters is that the Egyptian people voted the MB into power, knowing who and what they are. Until the Egyptian people choose a more civilized and tolerant way to govern themselves, Egypt won't matter to Western tourists.

      • http://twitter.com/morrisadams76 @morrisadams76

        don't be too hard on him, their elections probably count as much as ours. our fixers just don't have the balls to say they won with 85% !!

    • http://marezilla.com zillaoftheresistance

      So are you saying that the majority of Egyptians did NOT vote for the Muslim Brotherhood to rule the country? Because supposedly they "won" the election and were voted into power by the majority of people even though a lot of us could have told you at the very beginning of your "arab spring" what was going to come once you pushed out Mubarak.
      Too bad nobody listened to the counter-jihad a couple of years ago as we are surprised by none of this.
      I do have sympathy for decent people (like the horribly persecuted Christians) of Egypt who are now living with this evil that Obama helped to inflict on them and the rest of the world, but all of us who tried to warn people that you were going to get EXACTLY what you have got now were called "islamophobes" and other such nonsense and dismissed. So my pity for the Egyptians also comes with a bit of "told you so".
      I hope your country survives the stupidity that it apparently voted for, and that your islamists are overthrown before they have a chance to destroy the Pyramids, Sphinx, and other antiquities that people from around the world would be happy to spend lots of money in your country to see if your country had not decided to put dangerous genocidal retards in charge of it (and those dangerous genocidal retards DO regard those precious antiquities as "unislamic" so expect them to go the way of the giant Buddha statues in Afghanistan and other irreplaceable pieces of history that stupid islamists feel compelled to destroy).

    • http://twitter.com/morrisadams76 @morrisadams76

      well unfortunately, ''our'' government doesn't speak for us either,,, but it does. sadly, it does not matter if a law is passed illegally as long as someone is willing to enforce it. the reason muslim bro'hood is running egypt is because they have a co-cospirator in the white house. things are going to get a whole lot worse before they get a little bit better. these are the dark times we live in. a few decide for the masses and IT AIN'T EVER GOOD!! i feel bad for you and yours but i feel worse for me and mine. see you on the other side. pray to god there IS another side!

  • kafir4life

    Can you imagine anyone stupid enough to go visit ANY Islamic hell hole?? Seriously…..
    Around here, we do not hire muslims. We don't shop in muslim run stores. We don't shop in stores that employ muslims, and explain to management as to why. muslim are best ignored. Granted, not all muslims are terrorists, anymore than all dogs have rabies. We don't approach unknown dogs out of safety issues. It's the same with muslims. There's no way to tell by looking at one if it's going to explode, and that's not a chance I'm willing to take.

    For the most part, muslims should be giggled at and avoided.

    • Hubrish

      You my friend are a racist

      • Spikey1

        Muslim isn't a race….

        Definition Muslim:
        Noun: A follower of the religion of Islam.
        Adjective: Of or relating to the Muslims or their religion

        Definition Racist:
        A person with a prejudiced belief that one race is superior to others.

        There you learned something today…

        • edd

          here we go again, with that whole "Islam isn't a race" crap. You do realise that is the oldest argument in the book, right?
          http://muslimreverie.wordpress.com/2011/10/15/deb

          • Spikey1

            You just need to follow these three little steps:

            1. Find a word aside from the word "race" and and its permutations, that describe exactly what you are trying to call someone.
            2. Use that word in place of the word race.
            3. Stick you head in the sand for a bit.
            4. When all else fails return to step #1.

          • Spikey1

            So, according to your definition; the people who like swimming in the pools are racists especially to those who who enjoy swimming in; oceans, streams, rivers, lakes, ponds, and omg those who prefer to not swimming at all.
            I'm not even going to get into the above-ground vs in-ground pool race wars.

          • fakePlasticTrees

            You forgot to define race – a group of people united or classified together on the basis of common history, nationality, or geographic distribution: the German race. A genealogical line; a lineage. Humans considered as a group.
            Muslims are considered as a group. Classifying them as an inferior race of people is considered racism.

        • Nate

          Fine. He's a bigot

      • Drakken

        Oh look, a liberal throwing out the ole race card like so much confetti, well aren't you special.

        • fakePlasticTrees

          How about you respond to the issue instead of attacking the commenter. Anyone can call names. Use some effort and add some substance to this conversation. Stop being ignorant.

          • Rob Crawford

            What "issue"? Religious belief isn't a "race". Stop being a thug.

  • Friend of Egypt

    I am an American woman who has lived in Egypt for 25 years, as have many of my non-Egyptian friends. These days, we do pay more attention to the possibilities of being in the wrong place at the wrong time, but believe me, we are treated incredibly well by the Egyptians and walk the streets without peril. Many of my friends are Egyptians and they are appalled at what the current regime is doing; even some of the Muslim Brotherhood is appalled! This is a country known for it's generosity and kindnesses to everyone, extending a welcome that includes offering their last bit of tea and sugar to a guest. There are bad guys, as there are everywhere, but one still must look hard to find them.

    • Tyr

      I am completely sure that you are telling the truth. but then there is this question, if that is so, why people that don't support this regime, if they are majority, don't do something about it? :/

    • Flowerknife_us

      Don't look too hard now.

  • Spikey1

    Clarified:

    "I am an American woman who has lived in Egypt for 25 years, as have many of my non-Egyptian friends."
    (we were sold at the age of 6 to islamists and have been captive here ever since)

    "These days, we do pay more attention to the possibilities of being in the wrong place at the wrong time, but believe me, we are treated incredibly well by the Egyptians and walk the streets without peril."
    (driving cars, eating out at restaurants, going to school, and wearing the clothes we would like, are just a few of the items we have willingly given up)

    "Many of my friends are Egyptians and they are appalled at what the current regime is doing; even some of the Muslim Brotherhood is appalled!"
    (If appalled is redefined to mean happy)

    "This is a country known for it's generosity and kindnesses to everyone, extending a welcome that includes offering their last bit of tea and sugar to a guest."
    (everyone who is a Muslim for; Jews, Christians and Westerners are not people to begin with according to muslims)

    "There are bad guys, as there are everywhere, but one still must look hard to find them."
    (Don't you worry about it – The bad guys will find you)

    There all fixed…

    • http://twitter.com/morrisadams76 @morrisadams76

      THAT'S FUNNY! of course in her defense, after 25yrs, i'm sure her arabic is not lacking. i went to puerto rico for 2 days and learned how to say 2 beers and where's the bathroom.! you get much more respect if you HABLA!! for the most part i agree with you. i cannot recall in my world history class the lesson on egypts generosity. that's kinda weird. also, WTF would you go ANYWHERE for 25 years for? makes me believe you're right, on your first 'clarification'.

    • Madey

      Spikey1, you just continue to show how completely ignorant and bigoted you are. May God help you.

  • Mind the Gap

    You can tell this was an article written by a conservative nut job paper. All I had to do is look at all the polls and propaganda on the sideline of the article to determine that. And I have to say, I've been through parts of the Middle East a few years back and had no problems at all, including Egypt.
    And I have to say I love guideline #3 at the bottom of the comments.
    No ad hominem attacks. Isn't that what most of you people are doing when it comes to the ignorant raves you're giving. Making comments without ever being to Egypt or any other Muslim country. And generalizing a whole country's people without any facts about who they are or how they live. I've had Muslim friends while going to school in London and they're not all the way you people think they are.

    • Spikey1

      I've been through parts of the Middle East a few years back and had no problems at all, including Egypt.
      History lesson; a few years back was before The Obama handed Egypt over to the Islamists.

      BTW: I've also been all over the Middle East… I have no intention of going back. A few tours on an aircraft carrier blowing up sections of it was enough.

      #3 Didn't we find Saddam Hussein from Iraq with his head stuck in the sand?

      • Mind the Gap

        Sorry to disappoint you but, Obama didn't hand it over to the Islamists. It's called a revolution!

        • Rob Crawford

          A "revolution" carried out by the oldest terrorist organization on the planet.

          One where Obama openly rescinded his support for the previous government.

  • kaz

    a message to our dear liberals. please do visit egypt. spend your money to arrive at a place where the population hates you in spite of your anti-american views, and in spite of the fact that you have done everything you can do to promote islamic jihad. please go to egypt and be at risk for kidnapping, torture, rape, or being held ransom. with a bit of luck, you will be selected for treatment of infidels according to islam, that religion of peace you love so much. this will benefit our nation by getting rid of idiots, and will also serve as a lesson to your kind. yes, liberals, please do visit egypt.

    • Drakken

      Darwin loves liberal/progressives that is for sure, now I just sit back and laugh at their naive stupudity and hope they don't breed, like that moron Anti-American jihadist loving traitor Rachel Corrie.

  • prettymind

    Muslim Brotherhood are Terrorists
    they not an Egyptian normal citizens

  • oldguy

    The only way a US citizen should visit Egypt is in the company of an infantry division.

  • Graça Carvalho

    Your comments just make me want to puke. You're nothing but ignorant! I wish you all had the guts to take a step towards the unknown! Because what you're doing is blindly believing in what the media chooses to tell, the hate-story about Egypt. I'm assuming most of you are american citizens and, hence, I won't expect much of you to use your ability to think for yourselves, but DID YOU KNOW that an american citizen can, for example, get their visas renewed so smoothly once in Egypt, unlike, for example, a Morrocan or a Tunisian citizen (even if they're Muslim!). You're used to be treated with full privilege and easy benefice. You know nothing about this and you are proving yourselves as stupid and wrong as the MB intents, themselves. Grow some balls and fight for something once in a life time. Fight for something that you DESERVE. Egyptians are fighting and expats are fighting along them! We, those who chose to try the unknown, we know how Egyptians can treat you, either extremely well or extremely good. You have to use your skills to choose with who you want to spend your time with, and you can chose the right attitude to deal with this.

    You're ridiculous. I pity you more than any Muslim I've ever met.
    And no, I'm not Egyptian, I'm not Muslim and THANKS GOD, I'm not american.
    I'm just somebody who lives my life with my own feet, and maybe I'm luckier than you, because I have a perfectly operative brain and a welcoming heart.

    You're a sad burden this planet has to bear with.

    • Petr

      Is that the reason for rape squads on Tahir square, general open season on Copts and other infides. There is no unknown, the Quran is availabe for everyone to read, one you understand the muslims it is clear what is happening. Is the attrocity reported permitted by quran? Than it most likely happened. Is the condemnation of said attrocity in conflict with quran? Than the condemnation is most likely a lie.
      It is quite simple to understand muslims once you know the islamic doctrine.

    • Rob Crawford

      Graça, you are a prime example of a bigot.

    • Nina

      Your comment made me want to cry, because you’re nothing but naïve to the point of pathology. What the media chooses to tell is the facts, they don’t make it up.
      “You're used to be treated with full privilege and easy benefice”. Do you know that Egypt gets the most U.S. foreign aid of any country except for Israel? U.S. foreign assistance to Egypt has averaged about $2 billion a year since 1979. “We know how Egyptians can treat you, either extremely well or extremely good” – not all and not always. They didn’t treat Lara Logan especially well, did they? Besides, we are talking not about individuals, but about the direction the society has taken. Italians in 1930’s were no less hospitable and friendly, still they had fascism. On the last parliamentary elections majority of Egyptians voted for the notorious Muslim brotherhood , and nearly 25% for overtly fascistoid Salafi sect. Just yesterday WaPo posted that “Egyptian vigilantes beat two men accused of stealing a motorized rickshaw, then stripped them half-naked and hung them still alive in a bus station in a small Nile Delta town on Sunday, according to security officials who said both men died. The killings came a week after the attorney general’s office encouraged civilians to arrest lawbreakers and hand them over to police”. You may say it was an isolated incident, but there have been way too much incidents like this since the so-called Arab spring.
      That being said, I have used to be a great fan of Egypt. I visited the country about 10 times since 1993, drove through the whole country several times (from Red Sea to the Mediterranean). I talked with locals a lot, I even began to study Arabic at some point. I have always admired hospitality of these people, all Egyptians I’ve met (=plenty) were very warm and welcoming. But at the same time I couldn’t help noticing that great many of them were infected with irrational hatred towards Israel, first, and America, second. Their attitude to other European countries, though overall positive, was tainted by contempt. How do I know? Because I’m Russian, and they have always been much more sincere when speaking to me than to any European or American, for that matter – they, by and large, consider Russians their natural allies against the West.
      I fully understand that you feel passionate about the country and its people, but you seem to be completely blinded by your passion. And yes, THANKS GOD you are not an American.

  • Seif

    This is all not true, first of this picture isn't in Egypt and these aren't Egyptians, second, what u translated into citizens arrest actually translates to Judicial Arrest and it states that a police officer can hold you for 12 hours until he gets a court order to arrest you, and in these 12 hours they the police are not allowed to search you or even take you to a police station, they can only ground you till they get the court order, if the judge doesn't issue said order they the police must give "probable cause" if its not deemed so by the judge they put themselves under questioning. stop slandering i didn't vote for the MB i don't find their office in govt. to be successful to say the least and i don't need to make up stories to prove that, they're ruining up everything electricity black outs all over the country fuel and food supply shortages security is in shambles government amenities that were unsuitable already are now being taken out completely contaminate food, contaminate tap water (to be fair its been like this for 10 years or so, next one is their fault), contaminated bottled water even the generic food sold on the street is contaminated from air pollution. so in conclusion i think this isn't about defaming the MB its more about driving tourists away from Egypt, to who's gain, umm i don't know?

    • Nan

      Most countries like to have money from tourism. Requiring Western tourists to follow the tenets of a religion to which they don't adhere is not going to inspire visits to Egypt. I'd love to visit Egypt but it isn't safe to do so and the current regime wants to destroy the things I want to visit so what's my incentive?

  • seif

    also citizens arrest is a law in most "democratic countries" even the good ol' USA but it doesn't exist in Egypt, please find something better to do with you're life get of ur laptops and go out i myself am going out yes here in Egypt in Cairo to be exact where we have clubs and bars and WOMEN! booze and all even DRUGS, uh hard to believe right yeah their might even be a few foreigners and we're gonna kidnap them take them hostage to an after party on a boat sailing down the Nile where we'll force feed them alcohol and mdma until they take all their clothe of and give us permission to have sex with them we'll record said permission just to be on the safe side in case someone yells out rape, who said anything about rape?

    • Kursk

      Citizen arrest should really be called citizen detainment. There is no real force of law behind the act and you just may be the one hauled before the courts just for doing it.

      Seif, you project too much. Seek help.

  • Mary Franklin

    Why do Americans who never seem to leave their own country feel compelled to make nasty racist comments about pretty much everywhere else – the Americans I know dont understand why they are so unpopular in the rest of the world, if you look at most of the comments from Americans on this page, you can understand why.

    • Nan

      What race is Muslim?

  • Simona

    Let me tell you how the world learns what islam really means:
    When we hear bombs, we hear islam.
    When we see women dressed in black sacks, we see islam.
    When we learn of amputations and stonings, we learn about islam.
    When we read about sexism and homophobia, we read about islam.
    When we face animality, anger and greed for power, we face islam.
    When we smell death, we smell Islam.
    When we hear muslims say peace, we know they mean war.
    Islam is a dangerous, satanic F-ALLAH-CY!

  • WorldTraveler

    I'd just like to thank the administrator for showing their attempt to alter the realities by deleting my comment.

    You're just as bad as most of the media agencies currently destroying the reputation of counties for political sakes!