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Turks abandoning beards fearing IS association

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Ankara: Turkish men are abandoning long beards amid concern about being associated with the Islamic State (IS) terror group, the media reported on Thursday.

Residents in the Aegean province of Manisa have been flocking to salons to get their beards cut in order not to draw public attention by looking like IS militants, the region’s hairdresser’s association said.

“It had become fashionable for men to grow their beards and everyone was growing one. This situation led to a decrease in barbers’ work. However, citizens no longer want to look like people who commit such atrocities after seeing members of the IS terrorist organisation,” Hurriyet Daily News reported citing the association chief as saying.

“Nineteen IS members were detained in Manisa on August 7 and had long beards, so people opted to get their own beards cut in order not to draw attention to themselves.”

“In other words, IS has damaged the beard fashion but helped our business,” he added.

One local resident said he had decided to get a trim after seeing IS members in the news.

“I saw IS members everywhere in the news. I had grown my beard longer but now I’m getting it cut. I don’t want to look like a member of IS,” he said.

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