Somaliland: The Art of Covering Up

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Zainab at work in Hargeisa says she wears the Hijab as a religious obligation photo James Jeffrey IPS

Somalilandsun – while Somaliland women may be a force to be reckoned with among markets and street-side trading, they still face many limits to full economic opportunities  in a country that remains a strongly male-dominated society.

Somaliland’s culture is strongly influenced by Islam—Sharia law is included in its constitution—while this religiousness appears to co-exist with many signs of a liberal free market society, a dynamic embodied by Somaliland women whose roles in society and the economy undercut certain stereotypes about women’s Muslim clothing equalling submission or coercion, women are far from submissive and docile writes Jamws Jeffrey in a piece titled The Art of Covering Up in Somaliland

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