American Reporter Survives 'Brutal' Attack in Egypt

7:44 PM, Feb 15, 2011   |    comments
Lara Logan (CBS/AP File Photo)
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NEW YORK -- CBS News correspondent Lara Logan was recovering in a U.S. hospital Tuesday from a sexual assault and beating she sustained while reporting on the tumultuous events in Cairo.

Logan was in Tahrir Square after Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak stepped down on Friday when she, her team and their security "were surrounded by a dangerous element amidst the celebration," CBS said in a statement Tuesday.

The network described a mob of more than 200 people "whipped into a frenzy." Separated from her crew in the crush of the violent pack, CBS said Logan suffered "a brutal and sustained sexual assault and beating" before being saved by a group of women and about 20 Egyptian soldiers.

She reconnected with her team and returned to the U.S. on Saturday. The network said it had no further comment on the attack, adding that Logan and her family has asked for privacy. 

The attack on CBS News' chief foreign affairs correspondent is one of at least 140 others suffered by reporters covering the unrest in Egypt since Jan. 30, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists. An Egyptian reporter died from gunshot wounds he received during the protests.

A week before Friday's attack, Logan was detained by the Egyptian military for a day, along with two CBS cameramen. They returned to the U.S. after their release, and Logan went back to Cairo shortly before Mubarak left.

Speaking with Esquire's The Politics Blog Thursday night as she boarded a plane for her return to Egypt, she said: "We were not attacked by crazy people in Tahrir Square. We were detained by the Egyptian army. Arrested, detained and interrogated. Blindfolded, handcuffed, taken at gunpoint, our driver beaten. It's the regime that arrested us. They arrested [our producer] just outside of his hotel, and they took him off the road at gunpoint, threw him against the wall, handcuffed him, blindfolded him. Took him into custody like that." 

She said her interrogators accused her and her crew of being "Israeli agents," kept them in "stress positions" throughout the night and only reluctantly gave her medical treatment for an illness after she became violently ill. That didn't keep her from returning to Cairo to cover the unfolding story.

Logan joined CBS News in 2002. She regularly reports for the CBS Evening News as well as 60 Minutes, where she has been a correspondent since 2006. She has reported widely from Iraq and Afghanistan, and other global trouble spots.

(Associated Press/CNN)

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