Young Iraqi woman in taboo-breaking bike ride

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BAGHDAD: A young Iraqi woman cycled around the center of the Iraqi capital with dozens of other female cyclists in defiance of a conservative culture where tradition rules. “I feel empowered and happy. We confirmed today that our society isn’t backwards,” said 25-year-old Marina Jaber, who cycled with her long brown hair down and an Iraqi flag draped around her neck to applause from bystanders. Iraq does not ban women from cycling, but female cyclists are rarely seen because of a conservative society that frowns on them doing so. For several weeks, images of Jaber cycling around Baghdad have created a buzz on social media, and her Instagram account has more than 29,000 followers.

AFP

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