REPORT by 60 MINUTES: Egyptian Muslim takes wife (who appears to be a Muslim convert, judging by her parents) and 6-year-old daughter for a visit to meet his relatives in Egypt.
While there, Mazen Baioumy convinced his wife, Amaal Yasmin Finn, to sign papers (in Arabic which she does not understand) that allegedly would give her the right to enter and leave Egypt as often as she wants (like a Green Card). But that was a lie.
Daily Mail When it came time to return to Melbourne, Mazen cancelled daughter Zareen’s ticket and told Amaal that Zareen was staying for another two months to learn Arabic and Quran properly before she started school. According to Amaal, ‘Nothing I said would change his mind and he warned me that if I tried to leave without his permission, the laws in Egypt meant I would be arrested,’ she added.
Amaal was forced to return to Australia without her daughter ‘terrified and heartbroken’ and as the months went by Mazen repeatedly refused to allow Zareen to come home or for Amaal to visit her.
Amaal tried to keep him happy and get him to change his mind about letting Zareen come home from Egypt but at the same time planned to return to rescue her daughter with the help of her own father, Graeme Finn. They left Melbourne in August 2013 and travelled to his home town of Benha, where Zareen was living with her paternal grandmother.
Amaal was shocked to discover that instead of supporting her and handing her daughter back like they’d promised, Baioumy’s family refused to give Zareen up. ‘When I tried to leave with her they attacked my father and I in the middle of the street. Zareen was torn out of my arms and tossed, thrown and pulled by her arms and legs by the crowd of men that had gathered.
‘The police were called and my father, Zareen and I spent three days in the Benha police station. Mazen’s family made repeated death threats against us,’ she said.
Another twist is that the husband already had a wife and two sons in Egypt, making him a bigamist in Australia. We also see that Amaal has two teenage children living in Australia, apparently from another marriage to a Muslim, as the daughter is wearing a hijab and both have Arabic sounding names. To top that off, the husband falsified a claim about a car accident in Australia so he could collect the insurance money.
Australian courts do not have any authority in Egypt and the country is not part of the The Hague Child Abduction Convention, which seeks to protect children from the harmful effects of abduction and retention across international boundaries by providing a procedure to bring about their prompt return. When disputes over children occur in a country such as Egypt they are usually determined by the courts in that country as private legal matters.
Amaal previously revealed to Daily Mail Australia that she and her daughter have been living in hiding after repeated death threats from her ex-husband’s family. They have no money, no friends and do not speak Arabic but the Australian government can do nothing to help.
This 60 MINUTES video was filmed in 2016 and there appears to be nothing about this story online since then. If anyone has an update, please post it.