Egyptian pop singer Shyma (Shayma Ahmad) was sentenced on 12 December 2017 to two years in prison for “inciting debauchery and immorality” in her music video for song “Andy Zoroof” (I Have Problems), which authorities considered to be too daring and suggestive, reported BBC and Ahram Online.
Additionally, a Cairo misdemeanour court ordered the singer to pay a fine of 10,000 Egyptian Pounds (approx. 475 Euros). The director of the video was also handed the same sentence in absentia.
Freemuse condemns the imprisonment of both artists and calls for their release and charges to be dropped.
“Egyptian authorities have gone beyond their mandate and have violated international laws that protect people’s creative expression. These artists are unjustly suffering a grossly disproportionate sentence for nothing more than producing a music video,” Freemuse Executive Director Dr Srirak Plipat said. “No one should have to live in fear of being imprisoned for their art.”
The singer was arrested on 18 November over the video, which sparked outrage in the country and features the singer in a classroom in front of male students licking an apple and slowly unpeeling a banana, eating it and pouring milk on it, among other scenes.