Egyptian women jailed over TikTok videos

UNICEF-EU campaign shows the good side of TikTok | Devex

Five Egyptian female social media influencers have been sentenced to two years in jail each on charges of violating public morals after they posted footage on the video-sharing app TikTok.

The verdict came against Haneen Hossam, Mowada al-Adham and three others, and included a fine of 300,000 Egyptian pounds (US$18,000) for each defendant.

Mowada al-Adham (Photo: Egyptian Streets)

Hossam was arrested in April after posting a three-minute clip telling her 1.3 million followers that girls could make money by working with her. In May, Adham was arrested after posted satirical videos on TikTok and Instagram, where she has at least two million followers.

Egyptian TikTok star Haneen Hossam arrested for 'inciting debauch
Social media influencer, Haneen Hossam (Photo: The New Arab)

Their arrests and subsequent convictions highlight a social divide in the deeply conservative Muslim country over what constitutes individual freedoms and social norms.

Egypt has been cracking down on female singers and dancers over online content it deems too suggestive.

The country has enforced strict internet controls through laws allowing authorities to block websites deemed a threat to national security. It also allows the monitoring of personal social media accounts with more than 5,000 followers.