Wearing Hijab viewed as an informed choice in Kyrgyzstan

(AhlulBayt News Agency) - Wearing Islamic Hijab is becoming popular among women in Kyrgyzstan.

According to a report by the Iranian Cultural Center in Kyrgyzstan, the Hijab, with all its beauties, has become common not only among women in religiously devout families but also those with secular views. 

A Hijab-wearing woman is no longer viewed in the Central Asian country as being rural and those who wear the Hijab have made the decision as an informed choice.

Zarineh Barnieva, a university student, says there used to be a wrong attitude toward Hijab in Kyrgyzstan as people thought Hijab-wearing women come from villages and are oppressed, powerless and incapable of defending their rights.

This attitude has changed now, however, she says.

Zarineh says she is involved in social, political and cultural activities and her Hijab is no obstacle to making achievements.

Saltanat is a woman who teaches at a foreign university in Bishkek.

She says no one made her choose the Hijab but she herself decided to wear it.

"I prefer Hijab to modern clothing. No one forced me to wear it. For me, Hijab is not just a cover but a responsibility before God. It is a sign of faith and my choice.”

There are also many successful Hijab-wearing Kyrgyz women who live in other countries.

They include Gilmira and Ilmira Othman Ava who have managed to develop a successful Islamic clothing business in Russia.

Guljan Sadiq Ava is the founder of a charity institute in Chicago, the United States.

Jildiz Kalegunieva, is a nanotechnology professor at a Japanese university.

Qader Malekov, a Kyrgyz religious expert, believes that people attach importance to religious values such as Hijab in a conscious way and not just because they have been raised in a religious family.

Kyrgyzstan is a landlocked and mountainous country in Central Asia.

The vast majority of people in Kyrgyzstan are Muslims. According to some statistics, 86.3 percent of the country’s population are followers of Islam.

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