Egypt investigating couple pictured naked on top of Great Pyramid

Antiquities minister describes stunt as 'violation of public morality'

Peter Stubley
Sunday 09 December 2018 19:48 GMT
Officials have questioned how the couple managed to avoid security around the pyramids
Officials have questioned how the couple managed to avoid security around the pyramids

Egyptian authorities have launched an investigation after a couple was filmed scaling the Great Pyramid to pose for a nude photograph.

Andreas Hvid, a Danish photographer, uploaded the video on Youtube and claimed that the pair had spent "several hours sneaking around at the Giza plateau" before making the climb last month.

He also posted a picture of a man embracing a naked female friend at the top of the 140m monument, which was built more than 4,500 years ago.

The stunt sparked outrage on Egyptian social media although officials initially claimed that the footage was fake because of the heavy security at the site.

It has also been suggested that the area around the pyramids appeared too brightly lit in the video, which was first posted on 5 December.

On Sunday the country’s minister of antiquities, Khaled El-Anany, told MPs that he had filed a memo with the prosecutor-general to investigate the film, according to the Al-Ahram newspaper.

He said prosecutors would investigate ”how a Danish photographer and his girlfriend were able to scale the Pyramid of Khufu, and whether they really filmed an explicit pornographic video atop the Pyramid”.

The film, which appears to have been edited and reposted on 8 December, shows the couple climbing to the top of the pyramid before the woman takes off her top. It also included a photograph of them posing at the summit.

“In late November 2018, a friend and I climbed the Great Pyramid of Giza (aka Pyramid of Khufu, Pyramid of Cheops),” the caption reads.

“Fearing to be spotted by the many guards, I did not film the several hours of sneaking around at the Giza Plateau, which lead up to the climb.”

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Mr El-Anany said that scaling the pyramids was “strictly forbidden” and described the incident as a “violation of public morality”.

”I demanded that experts be tasked with checking the video and determine whether they are real or fake,” the minister added.

“The prosecution authorities will tell Egyptians how the two tourists were able to scale the Great Pyramid of Khufu, whether the video is real or fake, and negligent officials will be brought to justice.

“The explicit video has sparked fury and outrage among Egyptians in general, and the officials affiliated with the Ministry of Antiquities in particular.”

Mr Hvid describes himself as an urban explorer and his website features several photographs of nude men and women posing on top of buildings around the world.

"For many years I had dreamed of climbing the great pyramid," he told Danish tabloid newspaper Ekstra Bladet. "The idea of making a 'nude shoot' up there had also existed for some time.

"I'm sad that so many people have become so angry. But I have also received a positive response from a lot of Egyptians - something I think is worth remembering."

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