A video released by the Syrian Kurdish news agency ANHA shows Syrian women and children gleefully burning a burqua after being liberated from ISIS control. After a months-long offensive the Syria Democratic Forces (SDF) were able to seize more than 70 percent of the Northern Syrian town of Manbij. When the US-backed alliance, comprised of Kurdish YPG militia and its Arab allies, liberated the women from ISIS control they were able to finally shed the oppressive face-covering veils that were imposed on them by the terrorist organization.
The city of Manbij fell under ISIS control in 2014. The group imposed the hijab on all women living within city limits shortly after claiming the city in the name of ISIS. Other barbaric rules where put into place later in 2015; they declared that girls could be married off as young as 9 years old and prohibited women from leaving their homes unless absolutely necessary. The city’s proximity to the Turkish border made the city a strategic goldmine for the terror group. ISIS was able to use the city as a traffic hub for importing and exporting supplies and Jihadi fighters and for this reason made maintaining control over the city a top priority.
Watch real footage of the women torching a burqua to celebrate their newfound freedom from ISIS:
Many devout female arabs and Muslims in Manbij choose to wear niqabs and hijabs, head scarves to cover the head and face and “preserve female modesty in public.” The burqua, by comparison, is a full-body garb meant to cover the wearer from head to toe. While many Westerns may have trouble grasping the difference between the two garbs the difference is more definite to Middle Eastern women. Many moderate and liberal women find the burqua to be oppressive and resented ISIS for forcing the garb on them but will still choose to wear hijabs and niqabs based on their own personal preference.
For many of these women the burqua wasn’t just a piece of clothing. It was a walking prison and constant reminder of the degradation of their rights. It was a physical reminder of the constant rapes, human trafficking, and violent attacks carried out by ISIS against non-radical Muslims.