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The Burka Avenger

Burqa. Jane Burqa.

UK mother puts on a Burqa and heads to Egypt to take back her daughter from her husband.

A distraught UK woman, Alex Abou-El-Ella, had her daughter taken from her and brought to Egypt by her husband. After trying to get her back by contacting the Serious Organised Crime Agency and Interpol, who were only able to put him under red alert.

The alert provided no results, and the woman felt that she needed to take matters into her own hands. Throwing caution to the wind, she ditched her finest Vivienne Westwood for a Burqa, switched her tea for shai, and headed to Egypt.

Knowing that she couldn't do it alone, she enlisted the help of British author Donya Al-Nahi, known primarily for her real life story, Heroine of the Desert, which recounts her helping a friend find her kidnapped child, and who has recently she has been known for masterminding operations for a string of women hoping to do the same.

Dressed in a black niqab, Abou-El-Ella waited for her daughter to emerge from the apartment she was living in, and snatched her off the street and carrying her to a getaway car. At first the daughter didn't recognise her mother, and called out to her nanny. “But after half an hour she looked and said 'Are you my mum?'” She finally recognised her mother and it was a beautiful reunion. Abou-El-Ella praised Nahi for helping retrieve her daughter after two years of waiting and hoping.

Nahi was quoted as saying “You only have one mother and no one has the right to take you away from your mum. But Alex was the real hero here. She took the girl.”