In a crime that has shocked fans across the Arab world, famous Iraqi model and social media star, Tara Fares, was shot dead in Baghdad on Thursday.

According to media reports, unidentified gunmen opened fire on the 22-year-old while she was in her car in the Kam Sara neighborhood.

Her death has sent shock-waves through social media, with many users pointing out an alarming pattern targeting female personalities in the country.

According to The Independent, doctors told local media Fares had died after suffering three bullet wounds. 

The Iraqi Ministry of the Interior has launched an investigation into the crime and is yet to identify the perpetrators.

Her murder is the latest in a string of attacks on prominent women in the country. On Wednesday, Iraqi human rights activists Suad al-Ali was shot and killed in her car in the city of Basra.

Additionally, two other women in the fashion and beauty industry have died in mysterious circumstances in recent months. Rafeef al-Yaseri and Rasha Hassan, beauty center owners, had both raised concerns over militias threatening this job, according to Kurdistan 24.

While Iraq defeated the so-called Islamic State (or Daesh) late in 2017, other militias continue to dominate much of the country.

Fares lived in Iraqi Kurdistan, but made regular visits to the Iraqi capital, Baghdad.

She first went in the limelight after competing in Miss Iraq in 2014 and being selected as Miss Baghdad in 2015. She had since become one of Iraq's most prominent social media stars, boasting 2.7 million followers on Instagram.

While her posts were mainly centered on fashion and beauty, Fares did not shy away from speaking up about women's rights in the conservative country.

Social media users express their condolences

"She was harmless. Why did they kill her?"

Many think she was killed because of her lifestyle

And are hoping justice gets served

"Shocking and disgraceful"

The pattern is alarming

"A deeply disturbing trend"

"No one is safe in Iraq"