Nayera Ashraf: Man in Egypt sentenced to death for murder
An Egyptian court on Tuesday sentenced to death a man after finding him guilty of murdering Nayera Ashraf, a fellow university student who refused his advances.
Ashraf was beaten and stabbed multiple times in broad daylight last week in front of shocked onlookers by a male student whose marriage proposal she had rejected, according to a prosecution statement.
The family of the slain young woman welcomed the verdict announced by the Mansoura Criminal Court, according to the semi-official Cairo 24 website.
A judge said that Mohamed Adel, the convicted killer, was sentenced to death and that the case is now with the Grand Mufti to issue his non-binding opinion on the ruling.
The trial had begun on Sunday after a video went viral appearing to show the 21-year-old victim being stabbed by a fellow student outside Mansoura University.
Footage of the incident showed the assailant being later restrained by bystanders and arrested by the police, local media reported.
Ashraf had previously reported the alleged perpetrator to the authorities, fearing that he would attack her, according to her father and witnesses.
Adel confessed to the murder. The maximum penalty for murder is death in Egypt, which carried out the third highest number of executions in the world in 2021, according to Amnesty International.
"He stabbed her several times," said the prosecution, which found "messages threatening to cut her throat" on the victim's phone.
The crime has triggered widespread anger in Egypt and beyond, having been followed a few days later by a similar incident in which Jordanian student Iman Rashid, 21, was shot dead on a university campus. Rashid's killer shot himself dead during arrest.
Nearly eight million Egyptian women were victims of violence committed by their partners or relatives, or by strangers in public spaces, according to a United Nations survey conducted in 2015.
In February, the Edraak Foundation for Development and Equality released a report detailing a "notable rise" in gender-based violence in Egypt.
The report recorded 813 cases of violence against women and girls in 2021, compared with 415 such crimes in 2020.