According to Jezebel
, Amina disappeared a few days after her March 16 appearance on the popular Tunisian television talk show, Labes (see YouTube video above
), during which she explained, with her face blurred to protect her identity, her decision to join Femen
"One of the people who kidnapped Amina has been boasting that they did it for 'her own good,'" Free Thought Blog
Free Thought Blog
first reported it was unclear who took her or where she was being held, but confirmed that her phone was taken from her and communication with her stopped. The blog later reported she was seized by her family, possibly in collaboration with the civil police, and hospitalized in a psychiatric hospital in Tunis. The blog linked to this video
that appears to show Amina being abducted.
One of the photos Amina posted to the Femen page she created for the group in Tunisia shows her topless, smoking a cigarette with the defiant message "My Body is My Own and Not the Source of Anyone's Honor," scrawled in Arabic across her chest (see photo above
Another photo shows her with a middle finger raised and the message "Fuck Your Morals" inscribed in Arabic across her torso.
reports that Amina's Femen page was later hacked and defaced with citations from the Quran.
According to Change.org
, the head of Al-Jamia Al-Li-Wassatia Tawia Wal-Islah
(Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice) in Tunisia, Almi Adel, a radical Salafi preacher, called for Amina to be flogged and "stoned to death" for posting the "sacrilegious" images.
Adel warned that if action was not taken Amina's behavior could lead to "epidemics and disasters" and "could be contagious and give ideas to other women."
Reports say Amina could also be sentenced to two years in prison under Tunisian secular law.
reports Inna Shevckenko said: "Amina and I were in contact by phone until four days ago, when she disappeared. Her phone went dead and her Facebook page was removed, which also meant I lost all my correspondence with her. I can't get hold of her."
Shevchenko explained that she and Amina had been talking about Femen's ideology and making plans for starting a branch of the radical feminist group in Tunisia.
, after Amina reportedly disappeared, Shevchenko found a video in which Amina's aunt said that the 19-year-old "is now with her family. She had decided to kill herself and so posted nude pictures of herself online."
Shevchenko was of the opinion that her aunt's statement was a way to smother her voice. The Femen leader said that it was "a typical way of reacting to a woman's demand to be free--they say she's gone crazy or is being too emotional."
It appears, however, that the move by her family was a way to prevent her being stoned to death, executed in a honor killing or face legal action that could lead to her imprisonment.
Meanwhile, Twitter has taken up Amina's cause under the hashtag #Amina
. Richard Dawkins, atheist and author of the 2006 bestseller The God Delusion
, has joined a call for a day of action in support of the Tunisian girl.
Femen has issued a statement calling on women to "fight for their freedom against religious atrocities" and to "use your body as a poster for the slogans of freedom. Bare breasts against Islamism."
Maryam Namazie's Free Thought Blogs
has also initiated a campaign to make April 4th the International Day to Defend Amina. The statement on Freethought Blog
signed by several secular and feminist activists, including Inna Shevchenko and Richard Dawkins, reads:
"We... unequivocally defend Amina, and demand that her life and liberty be protected and that those who have threatened her be immediately prosecuted. On 4 April 2013, we call for an International Day to Defend Amina. Amina represents us all. On the day and beyond, groups and individuals can join in by highlighting her case, posting topless photos of themselves and their activism on social media sites, signing a petition, Tweeting #Amina, writing letters in her defence, and more. On 4 April, we will remind the Islamists and the world that the real epidemic and disaster that must be challenged is misogyny – Islamic or otherwise."
There is also a petition for her protection on Change.org