Story By: Juan Mayes, Sub Editor: Joseph Golder, Agency: Golder’s News And Sport
The British-Egyptian model who claimed an Egyptian footballer – defended by Mo Salah after being ditched by the national team – sexually harassed her is now suing a TV host who said she was too “ugly” to be harassed.
Dubai-based model Merhan Keller, 28, is suing an Egyptian Tamer Amin, 48, for 1.4 million AED (290,124 GBP) for the “stating someone as ugly as me could not be the victim of sexual harassment”.
Keller publicly claimed Egyptian international midfielder Amr Warda, 26, sent her aggressive and inappropriate messages on social media and WhatsApp in June 2019.
The claims led to Warda being kicked out of the national team who were hosting the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations at the time.
The incident led to a statement from Liverpool superstar Mohamed Salah, 27, who defended his teammate by saying “he should not be sent straight to the guillotine” and should have a “second chance” as “shunning is not the answer”.
Warda was reinstated in the squad after receiving support from teammates, however, he could not help them avoid being dumped out in the round of 16 after a 1-0 loss to South Africa.
Keller was reportedly partially blamed for the loss after the controversy that was generated.
Keller is now suing television presenter Amin after explaining that: “Mr Amin did not even call me to ask for my opinion or talk about the issue.”
She went on to say he “focused on the way I looked, stating someone as ugly as me could not be the victim of sexual harassment” when he spoke about the incident which “created a trend and made it funny to victimise me”.
Amin is a host and interviewer for Cairo-based talk show ‘Masr El-Nahrda’ (Egypt Today).
Local media report Amin made the allegedly offensive comments on 24th June during a show broadcast by Al Nahar
Reports state Keller is accusing him of insulting her and creating contempt as his show is watched by millions.
Amin spoke with United Arab Emirates newspaper ‘The National’ saying he “may have spoken sarcastically” and was “shocked when I heard Ms Keller had taken legal action” explaining that “public figures have to accept criticism, even if it is sarcasm.”
Local media report several women have come forward accusing the midfielder of similar instances after Keller went public with the messages
The case against Amin is set to be heard by the Nasr City Misdemeanour Court on Thursday 30th January in the Egyptian capital of Cairo.
Keller has previously said Salah’s statement put her “in jeopardy” as he is considered as “God” in Egypt and “can do no wrong”. The model also claimed “I cannot go to my country right now.
“People will attack me on the streets. You know how football fans are – ours are 100 times worse.”
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