Bikini revolution: Thousands of Algerian women protest against 'traditionalists'

Bikini revolution: Thousands of Algerian women protest against 'traditionalists'
More than 3,200 women have joined forces to protest against anti-bikini 'traditionalists' after an image was circulated online.
2 min read
08 August, 2017
Bikinis are not banned in Algeria [Getty]
Thousands of Algerian women are protesting against conservatives and traditionalists by wearing bikinis to the beach, after an image showing women wearing the two-piece swimsuits was circulated online.

Women in the coastal town of Annaba first mobilised on a private Facebook group to fight against those that slammed the swimwear as contrary to Algerian values last month, and have since gathered some 3,200 members to the cause.

"The aim isn’t to make a lot of noise or even less to make headlines, it’s to change society profoundly but gently," Sara, who founded the group said.

"This can be achieved only if people grow accustomed to seeing what they still consider to be forbidden. We don’t want to change their vision of things, just to instill in them tolerance and acceptance of others."

Last month, an image showing women wearing two-piece swim suits were widely shared online and slammed for contradicting Algerian values.

"Where are your fathers?", "Put your clothes on" and "Easy girls" were just some of the comments shared on the posts.

"These frustrated men will not ban us from going to the beach," Rym, a 25-year-old biochemist maintained. "We have the right to wear what we like and go where we like, when we like. We aren’t just good for staying home."

Another member of the Facebook group, Warda, told French broadcaster France Info "the Islamists did not come to power, but society became Islamised."

"For the past two or three years, going to the beach is harder. We can sometimes find ourselves alone in a bikini, when we have always been in the majority."

Wearing a bikini is not illegal in Algeria, however the swimwear is deemed socially unacceptable.