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Iraq. Najaf. A mollah (Emam Hassen Al-Hamamy) talks to a group of iraqi women after the midday prayer inside the mosque, Holy Shrine of Imam Ali. The women wear the abaya and the hijab (islamic headscarf) on their heads to cover their hair. The abaya, sometimes also called aba, is a simple, loose over-garment, essentially a robe-like dress, worn by some women in parts of the Islamic world. Traditional abaya are black and may be either a large square of fabric draped from the shoulders or head or a long caftan. The abaya covers the whole body except the face, feet, and hands. The mullah is generally used to refer to a Muslim man, educated in Islamic theology and sacred law. The title, given to some Islamic clergy, is the name commonly given to local Islamic clerics or mosque leaders.26.02.04  © 2004 Didier Ruef.