Skip to main content

Belly dancer runs for Egyptian parliament seat

Egyptian belly dancer Sama El Masry is an official candidate in the upcoming parliamentary elections, stirring outrage among conservative Egyptians who find her art offensive.

The candidacy of belly dancer Sama El Masry for the upcoming parliamentary elections has stirred controversy in Egypt. Some deem her entry into the race as the natural right of all Egyptian citizens, while others reject the candidacy of a belly dancer known for her “immoral” video clips. Masry has previously made some shocking statements, saying in July 2013 that some viewers use her videos as a substitute for pornographic movies.

Masry (real name: Samia Ahmed Atiyah Abd al-Rahman) holds a bachelor's degree in English literature from Zagazig University. Her father is a history teacher and she started her career as the host of a music show called "Clips" on al-Mehwar satellite channel, she moved on to dancing when the show was unsuccessful.

Access the Middle East news and analysis you can trust

Join our community of Middle East readers to experience all of Al-Monitor, including 24/7 news, analyses, memos, reports and newsletters.


Only $100 for annual access.