Former Miss Iraq Shimaa Qasim says she has received death threats following a string of suspected murders of "Westernized" women. (Instagram)
Shimaa Qasim said in a live Instagram video on Sunday that she received texts vowing “you’re next” in a campaign suspected of targeting "Westernized" women.
The beauty queen received the terrifying texts shortly after former Miss Baghdad and Miss Iraq runner-up, Tara Fares, was shot dead by two motorcyclists while she was driving in the Iraqi capital a week ago.
A gunman shot her three times while her Porsche was stopped at traffic lights in Baghdad.
In the emotional clip, the 23-year-old told her 2.7 million followers that women in the country faced being “slaughtered like chickens” and branded Fares a “martyr."
Fares is the latest victim of violence targeting secular women living in Iraq.
A female activist was killed before her murder, on Sept. 27, in Baghdad.
Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi has ordered an investigation into a possible link between the murders and any possible threat to women in the public eye who are Westernised.
Just before her death, Miss Fares had been bombarded with abuse online from Islamic hardliners over her perceived lack of modesty.
The beauty queen shot to fame in 2015 when she was crowned Miss Baghdad.
She had 2.8 million Instagram followers and her feed was filled with glamorous photos.
Miss Fares also had 120,000 followers to her YouTube channel, where she shared makeup tips.
She had also spoken out against religious, tribal and political leaders.
She also candidly discussed a brief marriage she had to an abusive husband when she was just 16 years old.
Fares’ shooting followed the slaying of a female activist in the city of Basra and two high profile beauty professionals.
On Aug. 17, plastic surgeon Dr. Rafeef al-Yassiri, 32, known as ‘Iraq’s Barbie’ who often posted images of herself on social media, died under suspicious circumstances.
At first, officials said she died from a drug overdose but as no updates have emerged in more than a month, some are beginning to speculate that there may have been foul play.
A week later Rasha al-Hassan, the owner of a well-known beauty center in the capital, was found dead in her home.
Authorities said she had a heart attack.