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Police confirm that Matruh girl was not kidnapped - Daily News Egypt

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Police confirm that Matruh girl was not kidnapped

Girl’s father did not file a police report

A police source in Marsa Matruh confirmed on Wednesday that the “Matruh girl,” Sara Isaac Abdul Malek was not kidnapped, contrary to the views of the Christian community and NGO groups. The police source also confirmed that Abdul Malek’s father has not filed a report with the police.

A statement from the National Council for Women (NCW) published on their website on Saturday claimed that Abdul Malek, a 13-year-old Christian, had been kidnapped and forced to marry a Muslim man. The statement called on the Ministry of Interior and the Matruh security services “to take the necessary measures to return the girl.”

Mahmoud Sayed, a police officer in Matruh says that this information is not true. He said “The girl was not kidnapped. She left her home in Dabaa and instead of going to school she ran away with her boyfriend.”

The NCW said that Abdul Malek’s father filed a complaint at the end of September; however, Sayed also denied this saying “the father refused to submit a police report. We did everything we could to find her but we are restricted if no report is submitted.” He added “the Christian community has not been helpful.”

This revelation from the police department supports a joint statement released on Sunday by the Salafi Front and the National Centre for the Defence of Freedom (NCDF). The statement warned NGOs and other groups against trying to find the girl, highlighting that her conversion to Islam and her marriage were “of her own free will.” The statement also said that “there is no truth in the claims by the girl’s family that she is 13 or 14 years old. She is of the proper age to marry and to bear children.”

The NCW statement, which says Abdul Malek is 13 years old, “rejects and condemns the issue of child marriage,” and highlighted “that the law criminalises the act and punishes those who practice this.” The legal age for someone to marry in Egypt is 18.

Ishak Ibrahim, a researcher for the Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights, highlighted the confusion surrounding the case.

“Nobody knows if she was kidnapped. There is not a strong enough case to prove that she was.”

Sayed also said “Despite trying to find her we have no idea where the girl is now.” Dr Selima Abd El-Rahim from the NCW in Matruh claims that she received information that Abdul Malek is no longer in Dabaa.

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