ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – Members of an extremist group are responsible for the murder of Iraqi model Tara Fares, Iraq’s Interior Minister Qassem al-Araji said on Sunday.
“Security forces are making efforts to arrest the killers and reveal them to the Iraqi people,” Araji said in a live video posted to his official Facebook page.
“The search for the assailants is ongoing,” he added. “We will pursue criminals and those who tamper with the security of the citizens through killings and kidnappings.”
It was not immediately clear which group was responsible for the model’s death.
On Sept. 27, Iraqi media reported that unknown assailants killed Fares, a well-known model and social media fashion icon, in Baghdad’s Kam Sara neighborhood.
The 22-year-old, who was voted as Baghdad’s beauty queen in 2015, was living in the Kurdistan Region capital of Erbil but had been moving back and forth to Baghdad.
In the aftermath of Fares’ death, incumbent prime minister Haider al-Abadi ordered security officials to immediately investigate the recent assassinations as well as kidnappings of well-known females across the country.
On Sept. 25, days before Fares was killed, a female human rights activist who was actively involved in the Basra protests was assassinated in broad daylight in an armed attack.
Security camera footage showed a gunman opening fire at human rights activist Suad al-Ali, in the Abbasiyah area in central Basra. She was pronounced dead on the scene.
In August, Rafeef al-Yaseri, the owner of “Barbie” beauty center, and Rasha al-Hassan, a beauty expert and owner and manager of Viola beauty center in Baghdad, both died in mysterious circumstances in their respective homes.