The photographer insists that the picture is real but that no sexual activity occurred while atop one of the world's greatest wonders.
Authorities in Egypt have reportedly launched an investigation after a photographer from Denmark posted a photo of himself and a woman apparently having sex at the top of the Great Pyramid in Giza.
The photographer identified as Andreas Hvid also posted a video to YouTube of the couple apparently climbing the pyramid at night, with the woman taking off her shirt at the tail-end of the production.
According to The Guardian, the footage and the image that Hvid posted to his personal website has angered Egyptian authorities following a public outcry on social media, and they’ve launched an investigation into both of the Danish photographer’s published pieces.
Egypt is very much a strictly Muslim country and the lewd image certainly violates the nation’s conservative morals and seemingly shows a lack of respect for the Egyptian history and heritage.
Egypt’s minister of antiquities, Khaled al-Anani, said that climbing the pyramids after hours was “strictly forbidden” and that the images were a “violation of public morality.”
Hvid insists that both the photograph and the video are 100 percent real, though some officials have suggested that the image and video might be fake, which is partially why authorities felt the need to launch the investigation.
“One hundred percent it is photoshopped,” Zahi Hawass, an archaeologist who is the former Egyptian Minister of Antiquities and former director general of Giza Plateau, told NBC News. “There is no way anyone can enter the Pyramids area at night.”
Hawass also added that the stones that are seen in Hvid’s video and photograph are “not the stones of the big Pyramid. They’re too small.”
Hvid is a photographer who specializes in nude shots and this is not the first time he’s taken a photo featuring a couple in a compromising position.
Hvid and the unidentified woman reportedly made the Great Pyramid climb back in November 2018. Hvid told the Danish tabloid magazine Ekstrabladet that he was trying to recruit a woman in Denmark to come with him to complete the scandalous shot. “Luckily one… had the opportunity to come to Cairo at short notice,” he said.
Hvid added that the two waited by the pyramid until the area became less crowded before beginning their ascent up one of the wonders of the world. He said that the climb took them about 25 minutes.
“A euphoric feeling struck us both when we reached the top,” he said to Ekstrabladet. “It was the culmination of a lot of work and many chances taken.”
However, Hvid has explicitly denied that the two had sex atop the great wonder. “We did not have sex and we never had it,” he said.
Ashraf Mohi, director of the Giza Plateau, said that after the investigation closes and authorities determine if the image is real or not, the penalties will be dependent on whether or not any damage was done to the pyramid.
Hvid added that he didn’t expect to receive such mass public backlash after taking the picture. He also said that he followed the urban explorer’s code, taking “nothing but pictures and leaving nothing but footprints.”
In light of the unexpected negative attention that Hvid received, he said that he intends to “stay out of Egypt in the future, as I probably risk being [arrested] if I go back.”
That is probably one of his better ideas.
Next, take a look at these 31 images of what life was like in Egypt before the British occupation. Then, read about a time in the 1950s and 1960s when Egypt was a more modern country — and even allowed women to wear bikinis.