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Waris Dirie

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Waris Dirie

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Waris Dirie (born 1965 in Somalia) is a fashion model and a UN advocate for the abolition of female genital mutilation.

Early life

Dirie was born into a nomadic tribe in Somalia. Her home was a portable hut woven from grass. According to her autobiography, at age five, her mother held her down while a local woman cut away her genitals. Afterwards, she was stitched up tightly, leaving a hole the diameter of a matchstick and making it near impossible to walk. "I felt not complete with myself as a woman. Some days I felt so powerless," she said. "When I think back about that, it still disturbs me. But coming back over that is still the hardest thing for me because you have to learn about yourself, you have to feel comfortable with yourself." Although Dirie survived the procedure, her sister and two cousins did not.

Modeling career

Dirie fled Somalia at the age of thirteen because her father gave her in marriage to a 61-year-old man in exchange for five camels. She escaped the marriage by traveling to her uncle's home, and hid her passport when he was going to return her. She ended up staying in Britain illegally and surviving by scrubbing floors at McDonald's.

By chance, she was discovered by photographer Terence Donovan, who put her face on the cover of the 1987 Pirelli calendar. From there, her career took off. When she arrived in New York, she was soon featured in multiple Revlon ads and in a commercial with Cindy Crawford and Claudia Schiffer. She has also modelled for Express Jeans. "It's very sad that I had to make the choice to leave my country and at the same time I did not want to leave," she said. "Africa is different. I was young. I had nothing to worry about. I had my family, I had my animals, I had my simple life. It was beautiful." Dirie now lives in Vienna, Austria but still feels the contrasts between the West and her war-torn home. "Here it seems like it is chaos forever and I'm trying to sit down for a moment and there's no time for that," she laughed. "In Somalia we don't have clocks so we don't care what time it is. But in the West, everything is money-money, power, sucking, sucking away. It is never enough."

In 1987, Waris played a role in the Bond movie The Living Daylights. A decade later she quit modelling to focus on her work for the UN campaign against female genital mutilation. In 2005 she became an Austrian citizen.

Waris is a cousin of fellow Somali supermodel Iman.

Attack

Waris Dirie was attacked in March 2004 at her home in Vienna. Then aged 40, she had moved from her flat in Cardiff to escape the persecution of a 26-year-old Portuguese stalker who had become convinced that she loved him.

Paulo Augusto was in custody after apparently following her 1,000 miles across Europe and gaining access to her apartment by climbing through a neighbour's window. "She was so frightened and in shock that she let him in," a police spokesman, Harald Hofmayer, said. Waris Dirie suffered minor injuries when her assailant threw her to the floor, he added. The attacker left in a taxi, only to return later on foot and smash one of the building's ground-floor windows. He was arrested when neighbours called the police.

The suspect had met Waris Dirie six months earlier when his brother was working at her previous residence in Wales, police said. He later broke into that home and stole items of her clothing.

She has written four autobiographical novels:

Desert Flower (nonfiction narrative written with Cathleen Miller) (1998)

Desert Dawn (2002)

Desert Children (2005)

A Letter to my Mother (2007; English edition planned for autumn 2007)

Pirelli Calendar 1987

NUDITY

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She really needs more love on this Forum...she's an exquisite beauty!!! :o

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my scan from 1994 img327.th.jpg

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^^ i love that shot, nefertiti!!!

and i agree, K-Dog.. she really needs moar luv!!

i just found these while searching google.

i am jealous of the wonderful beauty that somalian girls have :blush:

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oneof my all time fave pics... waris and iman.. theres too much beauty here.. its hurting my eyes!!!!

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Waris is a cousin of fellow Somali supermodel Iman

wikipedia states that 'contrary to popular belief, waris and iman are not cousins'

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did not know she was in Desert flower also, I knew that Liya was, thnx Reeyo.

I don't know if she's in the movie :idk:

I just posted the trailers bevause the movie tells her story :)

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She is awesome.

I just read "Desert Flower", and Iman was mentioned there, but they are definitely not cousins. I think Iman was a daughter or a cousin of a person Waris knew, but not of her (Waris)....

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Author and former model Waris Dirie attends a photocall for "Flor del Desierto" (Desert Flower) at Golem Cinemas on March 10, 2010 in Madrid, Spain.

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Honestly, I think she's the most beautiful model EVER...like in the entire history of modelling lol

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