French reporter ‘savagely attacked’ by Cairo mob; ‘More frightened than hurt’

In an echo of the 2011 attack on CBS News reporter Lara Logan, a mob in Cairo’s Tahrir Square assaulted French reporter Sonia Dridi last night while she was reporting on protests there. Dridi thankfully survived the assault:

Thks everyone for support, shocking but i’m OK. Could have been worst. Crowd out of control,guys took advantage of it but kept my clothes on

— Sonia Dridi (@Sonia_Dridi) October 20, 2012

We lost our bags in the “fight”. Very luckily, mine was found by a brave Egyptian guy a few hours later. He took it from the hands of thugs

— Sonia Dridi (@Sonia_Dridi) October 20, 2012

The Daily Mail Online provides details on the harrowing attack:

“The news channel said in a statement that Sonia Dridi was attacked around 10:30pm on Friday after a live broadcast on a protest at the square and was later rescued by a colleague and other witnesses.

‘The crowd surged in and then it went crazy. It was basically me keeping her in a bear hug, both arms around her and face-to-face,’ he said, estimating that at least 30 men were involved.

‘It was hard to tell who was helping and who was groping her.”

This video appears to catch the beginning of the assault:

Not surprisingly, the reaction to the news featured anger and relief:

Disgusting RT @mailonline Female reporter ‘savagely attacked and groped’ in Cairo…

— Lianna Brinded (@LiannaBrinded) October 21, 2012

Egtptians are attacking people exposing truth!//Sonia Dridi, Cairo Reporter, ‘Savagely Attacked’: France 24 TV via

— mae brown (@jesseimae) October 21, 2012

This has to stop. French TV correspondent & friend @sonia_dridi attacked in Tahrir. AP… Brief video…

— Sharif Kouddous (@sharifkouddous) October 21, 2012

“@madaraian: @sonia_dridi as egyptian , i felt sorry for you ,hope you takecare next time our country stil need time to be better :(“

— عبدالرحمن عز (@Abdurrahmanezz) October 21, 2012

The unacceptable face of the new Egypt: @france24 reporter @sonia_dridi savagely assaulted in Cairo, last in a series of women journalists.

— AnneElisabeth Moutet (@moutet) October 21, 2012… What is it with these disgusting sexually retarded Muslim men? They see a western woman & think it’s ok to grope her!

— EnglishDefenceLeague (@Official_EDL) October 21, 2012

Many noted that the continued violence in Egypt belies the promise of the Arab Spring, which was supported by President Obama:

Egypt, reporter Sonia Dridi sexually assaulted in #Tahrir Sq. As long as women are in danger, no room for democracy

— Paolo Salom 萨保罗 (@PaoloSalom) October 21, 2012

Still celebrating that Arab Spring? Then you’re prob not a woman, Christian or supporter of democracy or free speech!…

— Paul Wiffen (@wiffen) October 21, 2012… these people are savages. For women, it’s going tone a long Arab Winter.

— Rob G (@OHUTAK) October 21, 2012

Maybe Mr. Obama regards the attack on Dridi as just another bump in the road?

Some wondered why the US media is silent:

Female reporter raped in Egypt’s Tahrir Square for over 30 minutes on Friday. US media oddly silent. Again.…

— pissedlizard كافر ‏ (@pissedlizard) October 21, 2012

Thanks also went out to Ashraf Khalil, whose brave intervention undoubtedly kept Dridi from greater injury:

@ashrafkhalil Thank you for protecting female co-worker @sonia_dridi& modeling brave, cariing behavior. Safe wshes!

— Cat Mikkelsen (@catmikk) October 21, 2012

Ashraf Khalil, my good friend is a hero again…this time for rescuing France 24 Correspondet Sonia Dridi

— shahiraamin13 (@sherryamin13) October 21, 2012

Our thoughts and prayers go out to Ms. Dridi.

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