A mid-length skirt is considered to be fairly modest attire in most parts of the world. But a recent photo of a girl walking the streets of Kabul, showing bare legs from the knee down has gone viral because in Afghanistan, the image is so rare and controversial.
Kabul-based journalist Hayat Ensafi saw the woman walking down a main street in the city and was so shocked by what he saw that he knew he had to capture it. He told BBC Trending, “I was shocked…I knew I had to catch this special moment because I never saw a woman here walking down the streets like this.”
The ‘shocking’ image…
— BBC Trending (@BBCtrending) December 10, 2014
There has been a huge online response after Hayat posted the image to Facebook; thousands of people shared and commented on the photo. Because of the strict rules regarding women’s clothing in Afghanistan, the image shocked many online viewers but has also become a symbol of dissent.
The BBC’s Syed Anwar in Kabul says the woman is a huge topic of conversation. He told the BBC, “We have seen thousands of people talk about it…Not only on social media but also in the streets people are talking about her, wondering if she is mentally ill or if she is protesting.”
Some Facebook comments encouraged her bravery.
The BBC showed one comment that said, “It’s her body not yours…Salute her courage. We want to see more women come out like that.”