Too flashy for Fallujah: Women's fashion show in former IS stronghold causes outrage

Too flashy for Fallujah: Women's fashion show in former IS stronghold causes outrage

A fashion show featuring women has caused a stir in the Iraqi city of Fallujah, with a council of clerics and elders threatening legal action over the display.
2 min read
20 August, 2019
The fashion show was condemned by Fallujah's clerics [Screenshot]

A fashion show held in the central Iraqi city of Fallujah has upset the clerics and religious leaders, who have threatened to take legal action against the event's organisers.

The city's council of Sheikhs and Religious Scholars expressed their upset over the fact that women had taken part in the show.

"We condemn and refuse any kind of show that exposes the women of Fallujah to the public," read a letter published by the council on Sunday.
"Fallujah is the city of mosques and martyrs, and such activities are not suitable for this respected and conservative city," it added.

The show was reportedly the first of its kind to be held in Fallujah since the 1980s.

The Sunni-majority city became a hotbed for al-Qaeda activity after the United States' 2003 invasion of Iraq and was captured by the Islamic State group in early 2014.

Iraqi government forces ousted the militants from Fallujah in June 2016 in a victory mired by accusations of rights abuses by government loyalists.

Organisers of the event said the fashion show had been held in an effort to restore cultural activities to the city.

"Since the 1980s, Fallujah stopped hosting such activities," said organiser Inas al-Tamimi in an interview with Irfaa Sawtak. "We therefore want to restore these events and activities to the city of Fallujah."

Earlier this month, a dance performance involving female dancers drew the ire of authorities in the Shia holy city of Karbala.

The Shia endowment office and senior Shia politicians, including former Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki said the musical act "violated the sanctity" of the holy city.

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