Poppy hijab photographer denies that models were misled

One of the photographers on the “poppy hijab” shoot has rejected accusations by one of the models that she was misled.

Model Rukea Azougaye said she was “angry and upset” after the Daily Mail and the BBC published photos of her “without her consent.”

The poppy hijab is an initiative by British Future and backed by the Islamic Society of Britain to get Muslims to commemorate Remembrance Day. The initiative has divided opinion as many Muslims disapprove of Britain’s wars abroad and feel that they’re being forced to prove their loyalty to the UK.

In a Facebook post Ms Azougaye said: “I had no idea it would be all over the Daily Mail and I also didn’t know that there was an article our faces would be used for; hence I wasn’t prepared for some of the backlash I have been reading today.

“And it is only today that I found out that this random woman at the photo shoot who assured me that the photos would not be used was actually from the Daily Mail and those two guys with the third camera, who interviewed us, also assuring us that it was nothing major, were from the BBC. We thought they were all from the same crew as none of them had introduced themselves officially.”

Rukea M. Azougaye
Rukea M. Azougaye

But Rooful Ali, one of the photographers on the shoot, said the models were not misled. He said:

  • Consent for use of images was clearly communicated at the outset.
  • On location was the British Future’s team, the designer, two photographers (one from the Daily Mail), a BBC crew, and Rukea had her own videographer doing a documentary.
  • ALL parties identified themselves and intention to use the footage was made clear.
  • The model in question happily gave an interview/expressed her views to the BBC, which appears to contradict her stance in the article (or her Facebook page).

Ali added: “Naturally we are disappointed that she is upset, but we would like to clarify that we can only presume this stemmed from from the negative backlash, and comments on social media. Since clearly she, like the others, consented to participate in the campaign on the outset and we are disappointed that the article comments on how the photographers and media team had allegedly and effectively mis-lead her.

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“This is not true and goes against the professionalism of all concerned. Thank you for sharing and understanding, as with all stories – there are two sides.”

The poppy hijab, which costs £22, launched yesterday marking 100 years since the first Muslim soldier was awarded the Victoria Cross for his bravery during the WW1.

The scarf was designed by a Muslim fashion designer, Tabinda-Kauser Ishaq, a 24-year-old student at the University of the Arts in London.

She said: “I hope the poppy headscarf gives Muslim women a new way to mark Remembrance Day and to help raise money for the Poppy Appeal. It’s a simple way to say you’re proudly British and proudly Muslim.”

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