- Title: WEST BANK: Two sisters teach other young girls the martial art of karate
- Date: 27th August 2008
- Summary: (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) BARA AND WALA'S FATHER AND COACH, AMER NASSER AL-DIN, SAYING: "We live in a dangerous society due to the occupation, and life in society is really hard. So I realised that it was important for me to teach my girls this sport to give them more self confidence and to be able to defend themselves in the face of any danger."
- Embargoed: 11th September 2008 13:00
- Topics: Sports
- Reuters ID: LVAEDS5ADU974E108XURWLCT9VLX
- Story Text: Fourteen-year-old Bara and 15 year-old Wala Nasser al-Din have challenged stereotype in the conservative West Bank city of Hebron by receiving black belts in karate, a sport mostly practised by men and boys around the world.
The sisters have been practising karate since they were young girls and now compete in many local championships.
Their father and coach karate trainer Amer Nasser al-Din said he decided to teach his daughters self-defence due to the volatile environment they live in.
"We live in a dangerous society, due to the occupation and the social life is really hard. So I realised that it was important for me to teach my girls this sport to give them more self confidence and to be able to defend themselves in the face of any danger," Amer Nasser al-Din told Reuters.
The two sisters, who both wear the Islamic headscarf, have won numerous awards and medals, which their father proudly displays in their home.
They now pass on their expertise to others and train young girls in the art of karate.
"I got my black belt when I was young, around 8 years old. This is all thanks to my father who trained us from a young age and toned our bodies and gave us the appropriate tutoring to become strong trainers in this sport," said Wala Nasser al-Din.
Bara Nasser al-Din does not consider herself any different from her peers at school, but admits her karate skills do make her stand out.
"They see me in school as a normal student, just like any other.
But when I practice karate, they see me as a unique student," said Bara.
The sisters, who have been practising karate for seven years, have competed in local karate championships against other females from West Bank cities.
But they dream of competing in Arab and international championships in order to represent the new female Palestinian generation.
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