The young Tunisian activist, known only as Amina, 19, is safe at home according to her lawyers, despite other reports suggesting that she has been committed to a psychiatric facility.
Amina was the subject of death threats after she joined the Ukrainian feminist activism group Femen and posted “controversial” pictures to the organization’s Facebook page.
Amina posed in one image which shows her topless, smoking a cigarette, with the words written on her torso in Arabic that translate to “my body belongs to me, and is not the source of anyone’s honor”. In another photograph, she is shown flipping the bird to the camera, this time the message on her chest is written in English – it boldly states “Fuck your morals”.
Several media outlets had reported that Amina was missing on March 16th after she made an appearance on the popular Tunisian television show Labes. On the show, Amina appeared with her face blurred and explained her reasons for joining Femen. According to some reports, the host of the talk show repeatedly suggested that Amina should be put into a mental institution.
After the show aired, the Salafi Islamic preacher that heads Tunisia’s Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice called for Amina to be stoned to death. He said her brazen act had given other women “ideas” and could start at “epidemic”.
Angered by the Femen Tunisia protests, religious hackers hijacked the group’s Facebook page and covered it with passages from the Koran and religious warnings and exhortations. In one post, the hackers wrote; “The page has been hacked and God willing, this debauchery will disappear from Tunisia.”
Contrary to the reports that suggested Amina had gone missing and was committed to a mental institution by her own family, the young girl’s lawyer, Bochra Bel Haj Hmida, told a Tunisian news site that she had never been missing and “has never been in a psychiatric facility.”
Bel Haj Hmida, who is a renowned Tunisian women’s rights activist, told the news agency that Amina was going back to school and that she wanted to be left in peace. She said she was with her family and continuing with her life, but declined to give further details citing lawyer-client confidentiality.
Amina’s protest and the brutal threats she received because of it has garnered international attention. More than 80,000 people have signed the Change.org petition that demands Amina’s “life and liberty” is protected and states that those that issued threats against her should be prosecuted. On a Facebook page set up to show support for Amina’s courageous protest, several men and women have posted images of themselves topless with the words “Free Amina” written on their upper bodies.
Source: Daily Dot