The keffiyeh or kufiya (Arabic: كوفية kūfiyyah, meaning "from the city of Kufa" (الكوفه); plural كوفيات kūfiyyāt), also known as a ghutrah (غُترَة), shemagh (شماغ), ḥaṭṭah (حَطّة), mashadah (مَشَدة), chafiye (Persian: چَفیِه) or cemedanî (Kurdish: جه مه داني), sudra (Hebrew: סודרא), is a traditional Middle Eastern headdress fashioned from a square scarf, usually made of cotton. It is typically worn by Arabs and also some Kurds.
It is commonly found in arid regions as it provides protection from sunburn, dust and sand. Its distinctive standard woven checkered pattern may have originated in an ancient Mesopotamian representation of either fishing nets or ears of grain, but the true origin of the pattern remains unknown.
The keffiyeh has been worn by Arabs residing in regions in Arabia, Jordan and Iraq for over a century. During the 1960s, its use in other regions grew as Palestinian nationalism increased and the Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat adopted it as a symbol. Toward the end of the 1980s, the keffiyeh became a fashion accessory in the United States and, during the 2000s, it became very popular among adolescents in Tokyo, where it was often worn with camouflage-style clothing
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