Non-Muslim Women Try The Hijab For A Day

Non-Muslim Women Try The Hijab For A DayWorld Hijab Day calls on non-Muslim women to try out life under the traditional head scarf. Can it lead to more religious tolerance and understanding?

‘Oppression and divisiveness’

Originated by New York woman Nazma Khan, the movement has been organised almost solely over social networking sites. It has attracted interest from Muslims and non-Muslims in more than 50 countries across the world.

For many people, the hijab is a symbol of oppression and divisiveness. It’s a visible target that often bears the brunt of a larger debate about Islam in the West. World Hijab Day is designed to counteract these controversies. It encourages non-Muslim women (or even Muslim women who do not ordinarily wear one) to don the hijab and experience what it’s like to do so, as part of a bid to foster better understanding.


‘Choose the hijab willingly’

Esther Dale, 28, lives in the US state of California and is another non-Muslim trying out the headscarf for the day. The mother-of-three was told about the event by a friend of hers who is a “hijabi”. As a practising Mormon, Dale understands the importance of faith in daily life, and the judgement that can come with the associated clothing. She says she knows the stigma that surround the headscarf and hopes this is an opportunity to help combat that.

The hijab has been a frequent target of criticism from people like Maryam Namazie, a vocal ex-Muslim and campaigner, who sees the garment as a form of oppression. Organisers of this event say they were fed up with seeing the words “oppressed” or “subjugated” when it came to discussing the Muslim head-covering. They reject the notion that women only wear hijabs at the insistence of a father or a radical member of the family. This day, then, is about showing the world that women can choose the hijab willingly.

What are your views regarding modesty and women’s clothing? Are you willing to participate in the World Hijab Day to combat the misconceptions and stigma surrounding the hijab?

Source: Catrin Nye, BBC News

Image: Muslim Matters

Karzai Orders Manhunt For Taliban Involved In Woman’s Public Execution

Afghan President Hamid Karzai ordered the arrest Monday of the Taliban who participated in the public execution of a woman accused of adultery. Shock and outrage have mounted since an amateur video surfaced of a burqa-clad woman sitting on the ground while a man standing a few feet away shoots her nine times before a cheering mob.

Officials in Afghanistan, where the amateur video was taken, believe the woman was executed because two Taliban commanders had a dispute over her, according to the governor of the province where the killing took place. Both apparently had some kind of relationship with the woman, Parwan province Gov. Abdul Basir Salangi said.


To save face, they accused her of adultery, Salangi told CNN on Sunday. Then they “faked a court to decide about the fate of this woman and in one hour, they executed the woman,” he added. Both Taliban commanders were subsequently killed by a third Taliban commander, Salangi said. Karzai called on officials to track down everyone involved, including those in the video.

The killing took place in the village of Qimchok in Shinwari district, just north of the capital of Kabul. Karzai described those involved in the shooting death as “cowards,” saying “such crimes are unforgivable both in Islam and under our country’s laws,” the statement from his press office said.

The public execution is the latest and among the most shocking examples of violence against women in Afghanistan, but it is far from an isolated case. Nearly nine out of 10 women suffer physical, sexual or psychological violence or forced marriage at least once in their lifetimes, Human Rights Watch said in its 2012 annual report.

Do you think those involved in the woman’s public execution will really be caught and punished? What reforms should be undertaken to raise the level of protection for the Afghan women?

Source: CNN

Image: Viasat 1 News