CAIRO - In a protest against topless feminist activists staged in front of mosques across Europe, a group of Muslim women has launched an online campaign to celebrate their hijab and object to the way they are depicted in the west.
"Muslimah [Female Muslim] pride is about connecting with your Muslim identity and reclaiming our collective voice, the event organizer Sofia Ahmed, wrote on Facebook, Aljazeera reported.
Let's show the world that we oppose Femen and their use of Muslim women to reinforce Western imperialism."
Hijab: What's It All About?
Using social media sites, some Muslim women have posted photographs of themselves holding placards with messages to Femen such as "Nudity does not liberate me - and I do not need saving".
Other women held placards reading "Femen can't tell me what I can and can't wear".
The online protest, held under the title Muslimah Pride Day, followed demonstrations staged by topless women near mosques and Tunisian embassies across Europe on Thursday to express support for FEMEN activist Amina Tyler.
Tyler, a Tunisian activist, sparked a massive controversy in mid-March by posting topless photos of herself on Facebook, with the slogans "Fuck Your Morals" and "My Body Belongs To Me, And Is Not The Source Of Anyone's Honor," painted on her body.
The April 4 "Topless Jihad Day" was recognized across European capitals such as Berlin, Kiev and Paris.
The event was organized by FEMEN, a feminist Ukrainian protest group based in Kiev that was founded in 2008.
"We're free, we're naked, it's our right, it's our body, it's our rules, and nobody can use religion, and some other holy things, to abuse women, to oppress them," FEMEN member Alexandra Shevchenko said in Berlin, according to AFP.
"And we'll fight against them. And our boobs will be stronger than their stones," she added.
Police in Kiev detained two young activists with "Free Amina" on their exposed chests immediately after their arrival in front of the city's only mosque.
Around two dozen topless feminists in Paris whose bodies were tagged with "No Islamists" and "No Sharia" tried to approach the Tunisian embassy but were deterred by police as they emerged from the subway, according to a photographer with the AFP news agency.
In Brussels, a small group of women stripped to the waist gathered in front of the Grand Mosque shouting "Free Amina", while three protested briefly outside the Tunisian consulate in Milan.
Protesting the way in which the west portrays Muslim women, a huge number of Muslims joined the online protest against FEMEN hateful message.
I am happy and grateful to wear hijab, Noor Firdosi wrote on the Facebook event page.
It is my body and my choice.
The event drew support from Muslim men as well.
I am proud of you Muslim Women. You are protected and you are respected, Naseer Ahmad Ban wrote.
Support, however, was not limited to Muslims as an American woman, using facebook account Melody Church', criticized Femen's hateful message.
As an American, I am ashamed of FEMEN's actions; I hope the rest of the world doesn't think we're all that ignorant, she wrote.
Most American women won't disgrace themselves in such a manner, especially under the headline of such a hateful message.
Islam sees hijab as an obligatory code of dress, not a religious symbol displaying one's affiliations.
Islam, as a divine religion, sets down rules that strike a balance between men's responsibilities and women's rights.
Woman is recognized by Islam as the full and equal partner of the man in the procreation of humankind.
By this partnership, she has an equal share in every aspect.
She is entitled to equal rights, she undertakes equal responsibilities, and she has as many qualities and as much humanity as her partner.
Reproduced with permission from OnIslam.net