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Death of activist Sarah Hegazy highlights struggle of Egypt's gay community

The death of activist Sarah Hegazy has renewed the debate over gay rights in Egypt amid an ongoing crackdown against the LGBTQI+ community.
Fans of the Lebanese group Mashrou Leila show a a rainbow flag at the concert in Cairo, Egypt, 22 September 2017. The perhaps most famous Indie Rock band of the Arabic World is banned from Egypt because of rainbow flags at their concert, told the Egyptian organisation for musicians the German Press Agency dpa.
(Best quality) Photo: Benno Schwinghammer/dpa (Photo by Benno Schwinghammer/picture alliance via Getty Images)

CAIRO — “To my siblings: I have tried to find salvation and I failed, forgive me. To my friends: The journey was cruel and I am too weak to resist, forgive me. To the world: You were horrifically cruel, but I forgive.”

These are the last words that Egyptian queer activist Sarah Hegazy wrote down before she died by suicide on June 13. In September 2017, she was at a concert in Cairo where the Lebanese band Mashrou’ Leila — whose lead singer is openly gay — was performing. With a big smile on her face, she raised a rainbow flag.

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