All three lawyers, Amr Abdel Salam, Hamido Jameel al-Prince and Wahid al-Kilani, who sued Rania Youssef with public obscenity and incitement to debauchery for wearing a sheer dress to the Cairo Film Festival have withdrawn their charges.
They also explained why they withdrew their charges on an Arabic news outlet, El Watan News on Monday afternoon in a statement which was signed by the lawyers. According to them, Rania Youssef apologized and so they decided to “waive legal measures”.
Read the statement in full below:
First, when we took legal action against the artist Rania Youssef, this was not for the purpose of personal gains or benefits, nor was it intended to deprive her person, but was out of concern for public order and ethics and sensing the danger facing the Egyptian society as a result of that incident, committed by a popular public figure with an audience that will try to imitate them, which may lead to the spread of chaos and the violation of standards of values and ethics.
Second, we affirm our full respect and appreciation for the art and the artists, and that the legal procedures have been taken against a certain incident which we see surpasses the limits of freedom and social custom and contradicts the provisions of the law (which regulates the relationship of the individual to society) and constitutes a crime punishable by law if it is deliberately committed. And the freedom of thought, creativity, opinion, expression and other freedoms compatible with the international conventions and conventions stipulated in the Egyptian Constitution, but against all forms and forms of vulgarity.
Third, the artist Rania Youssef presented an apology to the Egyptian family and society for this incident and its affirmation that it was not intentional, that it was placed in circumstances beyond its control and that the behavior was wrong and unintentional. We decided to waive the legal measures taken against it.
Finally, we call upon all public figures from artists and others to take into account their behavior and behavior as role models and as the highest ideals for many young men and women in Egypt.
Initially, the Egyptian actress Rania Youssef was facing up to five years in prison for wearing a revealing dress to the Cairo International Film Festival last month.
The dress was a black floor-length sequined gown that showed most of her legs.
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Actress :Rania Youssef @raniayoussef_ Dress : Elizabita franky Mlihigue @Elizabitafranky Makeup Artist : mona Gamal @monagamalmakeup #Elmawardy jewelry # Hair Stylist : Mahmoud Ammer @mahmoud_hair_stylist #cairofilmfestival #cinema #redcarpet #raniah_youseff #mysytle #actress #ciff40 #drama #film
According to a lawyer Samir Sabri who spoke with AFP, her attire did not meet societal values, traditions and morals and therefore undermined the reputation of the festival and the reputation of Egyptian women.
In an Instagram post, Rania Youssef responded to the controversy saying that,
I wanted to state that I did not mean to appear in a manner that would anger a lot of those who found the dress to be inappropriate,
I might have miscalculated because I wore that dress for the first time and I never expected that it would cause so much anger. The opinions of designers and fashion specialists often influence the choice of clothing, and they might have taken into account the fact that it was an international event.
She also added that she did not expect to receive the backlash which she received. And that if she had known that would be the reaction, she wouldn’t have worn it.