Egyptian footballer, Mohamed Salah is being criticised after suggesting a team-mate accused of sexual harassment should be given a “second chance”.
The Liverpool superstar, who told Time magazine in April that the Middle East needed to change how it treats women, defended Amr Warda, on Thursday, in a tweet.
After women came forward with allegations of harassment, the Egyptian Football Federation (EFA) excluded Warda from playing in the Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon), which Egypt is currently hosting.
The midfielder initially denied the allegations, but, on Thursday, he apologised in a video on Twitter and promised not to repeat the incidents.
The EFA then reversed its decision, saying Warda – who plays for Greek team PAOK – can compete in the tournament. The allegations first emerged when Egyptian model, Merhan Keller, posted pictures on Instagram of inappropriate messages she said she received from Warda.
Other social media users also shared pictures of conversations and videos purporting to show Warda harassing them or other women online. Shortly after Egypt beat the Democratic of Congo to reach the final 16 of Afcon on Wednesday, Mo Salah tweeted that his colleague “should not be sent to the guillotine”. “’No’ means ‘no’”, he wrote, before adding, “many who make mistakes can change for the better and shouldn’t be sent straight to the guillotine”.