Deputy Director for Research Amy Hawthorne Quoted in The Intercept

On December 6, 2017, Deputy Director for Research Amy Hawthorne spoke with Avi Asher-Schapiro in an article for The Intercept entitled, “As Egypt Arrests and Tortures Gay People, It Enlists Pro-LGBTQ P.R. Firm in Washington.”

Longtime Egypt watchers see a familiar pattern at work. “Egypt and its lobbyists go to huge lengths to put forth the narrative that the country deserves special treatment because of its terrorism threat and its alleged irreplaceable regional role,” said Amy Hawthorne, deputy director of the Project on Middle East Democracy and a former Egypt expert with the State Department. “But no amount of PR can change the reality inside Egypt, which is that this regime focuses on arresting and abusing gays and lesbians, peaceful dissidents, and others who have nothing to do with terrorism while the real terrorists killing Egyptians grow stronger.”

There’s solid evidence to back up Hawthorne’s analysis. Just three months after APCO took on the Egypt account, the human rights advocacy group Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights produced an exhaustive study demonstrating that, under Sisi, the rate at which gay citizens are being arrested has increased nearly fivefold compared to the years before he took power.

Read the full article here.