Egyptian Instagrammer and Model Pose in Ancient Costume, Arrested for Pyramid Photoshoot

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Egyptian model and Instagram influencer Salma al-Shimi was arrested by police, along with her photographer, for allegedly disrespecting “Egyptian civilization”. Last week, Shimi posed for a shoot in the 4,700-year-old Djoser Step Pyramid outside Cairo and was wearing an “inappropriate” ancient costume, according to local media. While the model was arrested shortly after the shooting in the Saqqara necropolis, 32 km south of Cairo, police arrested photographer Hossam Mohamed on Monday.

According to local media outlet Youm7, Shimi is on bail but will face charges of “Take photos without authorization at the archaeological site of Saqqarah”, Al Ahram reports. A few days ago, photos of Shimi at the archaeological site went viral, Agence France-Presse reported. She has thousands of Instagram followers.

The Guardian reports: “A photographer was arrested after a private session with model dancer Salma al-Shimi in the archaeological area. His case had been referred to the courts. The Secretary General of the Supreme Council of Antiquities, Mostafa Waziri further declared that disrespectful photos at ancient sites are prohibited and that “anyone who is negligent in regard to antiquities or our unique Egyptian civilization will be punished,” said Waziri in a press release. posted on Facebook.

Shimi had also posted a video of the shoot in an ancient Egyptian dress. Expressing disbelief at the photoshoot, netizens asked, “Is there really a ban on taking photos in archaeological areas, even photos that are not indecent but completely normal?” wrote a social media user, according to the Guardian.

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Shimi, however, reportedly said she was unaware of the rules and never thought that photography at archaeological sites without a permit was prohibited. In July this year, an Egyptian court sent five young women to jail for two years for posting “indecent videos” on TikTok.

Featured Image Credit: Salma al-Shimi / Facebook

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