A Cairo subway official has told Egyptian press that people should not consider the subway system as a “destination” for suicide, sparking controversy on social media.
El Watan reported that Ahmed Abdel Hadi, a spokesman for the Cairo Metro company, said the city’s transport system “should not be a destination for those who are mentally ill or those wanting to commit suicide, so as not to cause delays to the lives of millions of citizens.”
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The comments have caused outrage on social media in Egypt, as reported by Egyptian Streets.
Blogger Mahmoud Salem tweeted:
the metro isn’t a suicide destination and shouldn’t be used as such. We urge suicidal people not to commit suicide there, since it will cause service delays and will upset the metro riders.” Spox of Cairo Metro Company on yesterday’s suicides at the metro #PlzDieConsiderately
The African country of 95 million has suffered through a period of intense political oppression and economic instability since the 2013 coup saw the country’s first elected leader replaced by a military junta.
Suicide is a pressing issue in Egypt and consistently pushed away due to the stigma surrounding mental health in the county. According to CairoScene.com, in an article titled “Suicide: Egypt’s Silent Killer”, Egyptian suicide rates have been rising exponentially since the early 2000s.
Additionally the same article states that the country has no current helplines.
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If you have been affected by the issues brought up in this article please contact these numbers: International suicide prevention hotlines