Egypt vows crackdown on tourist harassers

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Egypt vows crackdown on tourist harassers

Post by DJKeefy » Sun May 14, 2017 4:17 pm

Harassers of foreign tourists in Egypt risk a hefty fine under a draft law that the government approved in an attempt to heal the country’s ailing tourism.

The draft proposes a fine ranging from 3,000 Egyptian pounds to 10,000 pounds for pestering tourists, a heavy fine by Egyptian standards, state television reported on Thursday, quoting Minister of Antiquities Khalid Al Enani as saying.

“Anyone annoying the tourist will be punished by a maximum fine of 10,000 pounds,” Al Enani said.

“This is a new article introduced to the Antiquities Law that was issued in 1983,” he added.

Local hawkers of souvenirs are often seen chasing visitors at the country’s sightseeing sites to force them to buy their wares.

Al Enani said that proposed changes to the law also make illegal excavations and trade in antiquities offences punishable by up to life imprisonment.

In recent years, the illegal practices have become rife in Egypt mainly due to a security breakdown that hit the country following the 2011 uprising.

Egypt has an unrivalled wealth of antiquities dating back to different eras.

The parliament has to pass the proposed draft bill to become an effective law.

Tourism, a major foreign currency earner for Egypt, has been in the doldrums since the 2011 uprising.

The industry received a harsh blow in late 2015 when a Russian passenger plane crashed in Egypt shortly after its departure from the popular resort of Sharm Al Shaikh. All 224 people on board were killed.

The downing, claimed by the Daesh terror group, prompted Russia to halt flights to Egypt. Russians accounted for 31 per cent of the 10 million tourists who visited Egypt in 2014, according to official figures. The flight suspension is still in place.

Tourism used to contribute 11.5 per cent of Egypt’s national gross product. About 5.3 million tourists visited Egypt last year, compared to 9.3 million in 2015, according to Tourism Ministry. A record 15 million had visited Egypt in 2010.

Egyptian officials have said that tourism has started to show signs of recovery in recent months.

Source: http://gulfnews.com/news/mena/egypt/egy ... -1.2026699


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Re: Egypt vows crackdown on tourist harassers

Post by newcastle » Sun May 14, 2017 5:12 pm

Another law on the statute books which will rarely, if ever, be applied. :a84:

The police stand by while tourists are hassled. I suspect, in the pyramids area, they are actually complicit! Does anyone seriously think a law is the answer? Laws without enforcement are pointless (c.f. traffic laws) and Egypt already has volumes of pointless legislation.

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Re: Egypt vows crackdown on tourist harassers

Post by Horus » Sun May 14, 2017 7:13 pm

I agree with Newcastle, if these laws are not enforced then it is meaningless waffle, even in the pre revolution days it was not unusual to have tourist police touting for money at the sites and what will they propose to stop the general hassle from taxis, caleche drivers and all the other touts and persistent annoyances from being targeted the minute you leave your hotel? It would require some sort of draconian law that was actively enforced to stop this kind of problem and just how well would that go down with a younger element who have grown up with an attitude that they can behave as they like towards tourists, it just will not happen. 8)
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Re: Egypt vows crackdown on tourist harassers

Post by newcastle » Sun May 14, 2017 7:39 pm

If he/she is pestered what are they supposed to do?

Find a policeman and complain?? Hah! Fat chance of finding one who speaks English....and the culprit(s) will be long gone.

If the hassle is more serious, and you're fortunate to find a policeman willing to help, are you prepared to spend the rest of the day in the police station, filling out a report etc. ? Even in Egypt, they're not going to inflict a severe penalty on someone without some kind of "due process"...which might entail you giving evidence in court.

Are you likely to want to hang around for this?

If the police were willing to intervene pro-actively when they see a tourist approached by a local it might have some effect but it would be a bit draconian. A certain amount of hassle is part of Egyptian street life...always has been...always will be.

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Re: Egypt vows crackdown on tourist harassers

Post by DJKeefy » Sun May 14, 2017 7:50 pm

15+ years ago the police used to wack the Egyptians with a stick if they saw them just trying to speak to a foreigner, I hope they don't start doing that again :td
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Re: Egypt vows crackdown on tourist harassers

Post by Horus » Sun May 14, 2017 7:55 pm

DJKeefy wrote:15+ years ago the police used to wack the Egyptians with a stick if they saw them just trying to speak to a foreigner, I hope they don't start doing that again :td
Maybe something in-between, say a swift kick in the nuts? :lol:
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Re: Egypt vows crackdown on tourist harassers

Post by newcastle » Sun May 14, 2017 8:07 pm

Horus wrote:
DJKeefy wrote:15+ years ago the police used to wack the Egyptians with a stick if they saw them just trying to speak to a foreigner, I hope they don't start doing that again :td
Maybe something in-between, say a swift kick in the nuts? :lol:
Aaaah...the good old days when the tourist was "God" and the locals went in fear of being reported by a foreigner whose word was enough to see them spending hours being slapped around in the police station.

I think that went overboard after Mubarak was kicked out..... :lol:

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Re: Egypt vows crackdown on tourist harassers

Post by Dusak » Mon May 15, 2017 11:19 am

Well, all I can say is good luck with that one. No doubt they will soon be bringing in a similar law against the foreign harassers in the visa office. :lol: Yes, the good old days, get pestered, swivel the head towards the nearest copper. All they would leave behind were their skid marks, on pavement and underpants.
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Re: Egypt vows crackdown on tourist harassers

Post by Major Thom » Tue May 16, 2017 4:18 am

Harassment in the visa office! Never......its more like showing frustration.

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Re: Egypt vows crackdown on tourist harassers

Post by John Landon » Tue May 16, 2017 7:58 am

Crackdown on tourist harassers ?

Now there's a prime example of closing the stable door after the horse has bolted... And given enough time to circumnavigate the Earth and die of old age...


Hassle ? You Pussies, :ks

I call it "assertiveness training"..... 8)

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Re: Egypt vows crackdown on tourist harassers

Post by Adamantium » Wed May 17, 2017 2:13 am

When I first visited Luxor it was the case the Police would collar anyone harassing a tourist. Egyptians would even be pulled in and put before the Officers and even end up in a cell. I did find this shocking at times as it was foreign to how we see police behave. The revolution gave people courage to stand up for what they believe in and so they become unafraid. When they are unafraid the Police lose their power. From the stories I have heard via this forum and other searches it does sound like the Police have given up whereas before they seemed to thrive on the power they had over people. As said by others this only works if it is enforced. Threatening to take a matter to the Police would in the past scare off unwanted intrusions. If I walked with an Egyptian and they are no bother I would tell the Police if approached I am fine walking with them. The hassle is another matter. It is a matter of respect to accept no rather than hassle us in the hope that decision would suddenly change. There are pieces of advice which work more for those who are not familiar faces. Amongst these are the idea not to speak at all and so they do not know your nationality. Or ignore them which going by some of the posts on this Forum does not work at all which given the circumstances - the lack of tourists the hassle hounds would want to bite onto whatever tourist there is and refuse to let go. That seems to be an apt way to describe them 'Hassle Hounds' - One sniff of tourist fodder and they pounce barking and biting snapping at you never letting go until something is said or done in their favour. It is something they learn before they can walk. I once joked that in the West a parent is happy when the baby says their first word 'Mommy' 'Daddy'. In Luxor parents are happy when their child learns to say. 'Hello Baksheesh.' I say it with affection.

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Re: Egypt vows crackdown on tourist harassers

Post by newcastle » Wed May 17, 2017 4:11 am

A fair summary Adamantium.

The "deaf, dumb & blind" response to harassers is probably the best...although not effective against the terminally persistent. It's not an attitude that comes to us naturally but any verbal engagement - even the "f*ck off" variety - is only likely to prolong the confrontation.

Any attempt at appeasement, or the tendering of modest baksheesh, usually attracts even more attention. It's as if the smell of money wafts on the breeze, like a pheromone, and they converge on you from all directions :lol:

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Re: Egypt vows crackdown on tourist harassers

Post by Dusak » Wed May 17, 2017 9:41 am

While trampling around Luxor yesterday, the hassle levels were quite high and intense, long time since I've experienced this.
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Re: Egypt vows crackdown on tourist harassers

Post by Horus » Wed May 17, 2017 10:01 am

Dusak wrote:While trampling around Luxor yesterday, the hassle levels were quite high and intense, long time since I've experienced this.
They are getting more and more desperate. :(
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Re: Egypt vows crackdown on tourist harassers

Post by newcastle » Wed May 17, 2017 10:48 am

Dusak wrote:While trampling around Luxor yesterday, the hassle levels were quite high and intense, long time since I've experienced this.
You should publish a daily "Hassle Factor".

A bit like the UV Index...or Pollen Count!

When it exceeds a certain level, tourists can then stay in their hotels :lol:

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Re: Egypt vows crackdown on tourist harassers

Post by Dusak » Thu May 18, 2017 9:26 am

Believe it or not, most times I find it hard to criticize the Egyptians, they live and lead a hard and demanding life. Or most do. As my friend said a few weeks back when I was bemoaning the fact that once again tuna had increased in price, she said try living as an Egyptian that can't afford to buy such things for their family to enjoy, let alone for a cat. :oops:
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Re: Egypt vows crackdown on tourist harassers

Post by newcastle » Thu May 18, 2017 10:00 am

Dusak wrote:Believe it or not, most times I find it hard to criticize the Egyptians, they live and lead a hard and demanding life. Or most do. As my friend said a few weeks back when I was bemoaning the fact that once again tuna had increased in price, she said try living as an Egyptian that can't afford to buy such things for their family to enjoy, let alone for a cat. :oops:
That's so true.

And what makes it even sadder is that's there's bugger all they can do to get out of the situation...when the country is run by a small elite who seem, in the main, preoccupied with maintaining their position of dominance. Many Egyptians have to work long hours at several menial jobs just to scrape enough money to survive.

It's little wonder that some - a few - sit around with their hands out, or turn to dishonesty.

You can understand that some simply despair... :(

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Re: Egypt vows crackdown on tourist harassers

Post by Zooropa » Thu May 18, 2017 10:32 pm

newcastle wrote:Another law on the statute books which will rarely, if ever, be applied. :a84:

The police stand by while tourists are hassled. I suspect, in the pyramids area, they are actually complicit! Does anyone seriously think a law is the answer? Laws without enforcement are pointless (c.f. traffic laws) and Egypt already has volumes of pointless legislation.

Confirmed - exactly what happened to me last week.

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Re: Egypt vows crackdown on tourist harassers

Post by Zooropa » Thu May 18, 2017 10:40 pm

DJKeefy wrote:15+ years ago the police used to wack the Egyptians with a stick if they saw them just trying to speak to a foreigner, I hope they don't start doing that again :td
I think somewhere in the middle would be the answer. My first night here in Luxor and I had left the hotel and crossed the road, my son and I were followed for over 100 yards by a caleche driver, I must have declined his services a dozen times, he ignored me and continued to hassle my son, in the end I got between him and my son and raised my hand and said "no thankyou" he responded by saying "I am not a terrorist" before shouting a triad of what I suspect was abuse in Arabic.

Not sure how declining someone's services is tantamount to me considering them a terrorist. If that's the case then I think most Egyptians are terrorists.

A selection of other "comments" ive had this week:

"Leave my country"

"This is my country"

"Why you angry, answer me"!

"Fu**ker"

Only been here since Monday!

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Re: Egypt vows crackdown on tourist harassers

Post by Zooropa » Thu May 18, 2017 10:54 pm

newcastle wrote:
Dusak wrote:Believe it or not, most times I find it hard to criticize the Egyptians, they live and lead a hard and demanding life. Or most do. As my friend said a few weeks back when I was bemoaning the fact that once again tuna had increased in price, she said try living as an Egyptian that can't afford to buy such things for their family to enjoy, let alone for a cat. :oops:
That's so true.

And what makes it even sadder is that's there's bugger all they can do to get out of the situation...when the country is run by a small elite who seem, in the main, preoccupied with maintaining their position of dominance. Many Egyptians have to work long hours at several menial jobs just to scrape enough money to survive.

It's little wonder that some - a few - sit around with their hands out, or turn to dishonesty.

You can understand that some simply despair... :(
Agreed, but hassling the tits off of tourists is not the answer.

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