There aren’t many big social media stars in Iraq but one of the biggest was unquestionably Tara Fares but she was shot and killed in Baghdad on Thursday reports CNN.
Fares had won the Miss Baghdad competition and came second in Miss Iraq and fell victim to a shooting in the Camp Sarah neighborhood, an attack perpetrated by multiple gunmen.
According to Iraqi officials, Fares was in her car when two men on motorcycles drove past on either side of her vehicle, shooting her from either side. The Iraqi interior ministry will be investigating the murder, it said in a statement.
Fares was known for her bold clothing in her social media posts and has almost 3 million followers on Instagram where she posted her styles.
With an Iraqi father and a Lebanese mother, the young Christian woman had been seen by many as a face of a new Iraq. Fares actually lived in Erbil, the second major city in the country but often visited the capital for business.
On Instagram, a black and white photo was posted in memoriam with a caption in Arabic which read “In a treacherous and cowardly incident, Tara Fares Chamoun, is with God. We asked God to accept her with His great mercy.”
The shooting death of Fares comes just one month after two other significant women in Baghdad’s beauty scene were murdered.
Rafeef al-Yaseri, popularly known as the “Barbie of Iraq,” was killed in her own home by intruders. Al-Yaseri specialized in plastic surgery and sought to establish medical programs for women to lift the health of all women in Iraq.
Just one week after al-Yaseri’s death Rasha al-Hassan was found dead in her house, with so far no cause of death determined. Al-Hassan is the owner of the Viola Beauty Center in Baghdad and appears to have been targeted for her work there.
The death of these three notable women of Iraq’s beauty and fashion industries is a worrying trend for authorities in the country which is trying to establish those two industries.
The identity of the gunmen is still unknown. They have not been apprehended by the Interior Ministry and they are worried about the trend of the recent spate of attacks against women.
Fares died in a Baghdad hospital, reports the Independent, presenting at the hospital with three bullet wounds. Despite all the work at the hospital, she couldn’t be revived and passed away early in the morning, seeing Iraq lose a powerful voice for women’s rights.