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Iraq gets first beauty queen since 1972


SocalDinar
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Iraq gets first beauty queen since 1972

 

It was smoky, alcohol-free and there was no swimsuit contest, but Saturday's party produced the first Miss Iraq in four decades and left all feeling a small victory had been won.

"Some people out there think we don't love life," said Humam al-Obeidi, one of the organisers, as the crowd spilled out of the Baghdad hotel ballroom where the pageant was held.

The jury chose Shaymaa Qasim, a tall, green-eyed 20-year-old from Iraq's multi-ethnic city of Kirkuk.

The decision was popular with those in attendance, especially in the back rows, where young men with hispter beards and tight blazers had been standing on their chairs shouting her name.

"I'm very happy to see Iraq going forward," the new beauty queen told AFP as she tried to fend off a scrum of admirers hoping to clinch a selfie. "This event was huge and put a smile on the faces of the Iraqis."

Wearing her sash and holding her bouquet, Shaymaa Abdelrahman was fast learning her new trade, saying all the right things without ever breaking her smile.

There was more talking than glamorous strutting during the pageant as the contestants, in high heels and evening dresses that were sleeveless but below the knee, pitched their charity projects to the jury.

The pageant was designed to meet enough international criteria to propel its winner to the next Miss Universe contest, but some details, such as the Kalashnikov-toting guard at the door, set the event firmly in Iraq.

"We look forward to having a good ambassador for Iraq," said Senan Kamel, the 2015 pageant's artistic director, who also organised Iraq's first fashion show in years last March.

One contestant said she would try to fix the Mosul dam, Iraq's largest and reportedly in need of urgent repair work.

The winner said she would use her fame to forward educational initiatives, especially among the massive population of people who have been displaced by conflict.

The last time the Miss Iraq competition was held was in 1972, when the oil-rich country was on an upward track.

The jury chose Shaymaa Qasim, a 20-year-old from Iraq's multi-ethnic city of Kirkuk

Iraq%20beauty%20contest%202015%20AFP.jpg
Miss Iraqi winner Shaymaa Qasim (L) and Farah Naseer ® smiles after being named first runner-up in the Miss Iraq beauty contest on 19 December 2015 in Baghdad (AFP)
picture-130-1444332742.png
 
Saturday 19 December 2015 22:39 UTC

http://www.middleeasteye.net/news/iraq-gets-first-beauty-queen-1972-936585321

Edited by SocalDinar
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Iraq gets first beauty queen since 1972
 
 

"Some people out there think we don't love life," said Humam al-Obeidi, one of the organisers, as the crowd spilled out of the Baghdad hotel ballroom where the pageant was held.

The jury chose Shaymaa Abdelrahman, a tall, green-eyed 20-year-old from Iraq's multi-ethnic city of Kirkuk.

The decision was popular with those in attendance, especially in the back rows, where young men with hipster beards and tight blazers had been standing on their chairs shouting her name.

"I'm very happy to see Iraq going forward," the new beauty queen told AFP as she tried to fend off a scrum of admirers hoping to clinch a selfie. "This event was huge and put a smile on the faces of the Iraqis."

9712aaefd12111f95bb9fa97b183885301b01fea
Iraqi Shaymaa Qasim waves after winning the Miss Iraq beauty contest on December 19, 2015
Ahmad al-Rubaye, AFP

Wearing her sash and holding her bouquet, Shaymaa Abdelrahman was fast learning her new trade, saying all the right things without ever breaking her smile.

There was more talking than glamorous strutting during the pageant as the contestants, in high heels and evening dresses that were sleeveless but below the knee, pitched their charity projects to the jury.

The pageant was designed to meet enough international criteria to propel its winner to the next Miss Universe contest, but some details, such as the Kalashnikov-toting guard at the door, set the event firmly in Iraq.

The winner said she would use her fame to forward educational initiatives, especially among the massive population of people who have been displaced by conflict.

One contestant said she would try to fix the Mosul dam, Iraq's largest and reportedly in need of urgent repair work, "because it threatened the entire country."

- 'Still alive' -

7c3686bcb5f0f9483e0656a489e6354dd30748de
Iraqi women taking part in the Miss Iraq beauty contest stand on stage before the audience on December 19, 2015 in the capital Baghdad
Ahmad al-Rubaye, AFP

In the week running up to the event, the eight finalists embarked on a string of pre-pageant activities, including the visit of a camp for displaced people in Baghdad.

Speaking to AFP during a tree-planting ceremony near the ruins of the ancient city of Babylon on Thursday, Suzan Amer, a 22-year-old from the Kurdish town of Sulaimaniyah argued that a beauty pageant was more than a mere distraction in Iraq.

"It's my first time doing anything like this but it's an experience I wanted to be part of. I think Iraq needs events like these," said the young woman with ash blonde hair, bright fuscia lipstick and a rosebud tucked above her ear.

Iraq is wracked by an ongoing war against the Islamic State, the world's most brutal jihadist organisation, and plagued by deep sectarian tensions and corruption.

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Candidates for the Miss Iraq beauty contest pose in front of the Ishtar Gate at the ancient archaeological site of Babylon on December 17, 2015
Ahmad al-Rubaye, AFP/File

But the pageant, which culminated with the jury announcing the winner as Beethoven's Ode to Joy filled the ballroom, left participants, organisers and guests feeling that beating the gloom was part of the war effort.

"I think it is wonderful; it makes you feel things can come back to normal," said veteran human rights activist Hana Edwar.

The last time the Miss Iraq competition was held was in 1972, when the oil-rich country was on an upward track.

Old footage of the contest available on the Internet shows Wijdan Burhan al-Din Suleimank, at a venue in Puerto Rico, introducing herself at the microphone, between India and Ireland in the speaking order.

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Candidates for the Miss Iraq beauty contest plant roses in the garden of the ancient archaeological site of Babylon on December 17, 2015
Ahmad al-Rubaye, AFP/File

"We look forward to having a good ambassador for Iraq," said Senan Kamel, the 2015 pageant's artistic director, who also organised Iraq's first fashion show in years last March.

"What we're hoping to accomplish is to make Iraq's voice heard, show that it is still alive, that its heart is still beating," he said.

The fashion designer was carried out to the car park after nearly fainting from exhaustion and stress before the show but he was back on his feet and all smiles in time to vote with the jury and present the winner with her crown.

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With everything that is going on in Iraq, conducting this Miss Iraq Beauty Contest speaks volumes for the tenacity to succeed ! This says so much about the people and to the world that they will not be denied their Future.

 

Regardless whether or not you agree with Beauty Pageants, I don't care - they're going to join in on those things that other "Free" countries enjoy by god [ or Allah ]. Day by day, they show the world that they will rise from the horrors of a Dictatorship and have an Iraq they are proud of.

Edited by 10 YEARS LATER
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Monday, December 21 0.2015
 

 

 

Coronation Shaima Qasim came Miss on Iraq for 2015, after an absence of 40 years for this competition for Iraq, which is designed to be set up despite the grinding war in it, and that have not received the queens of the beauty of the 
fire. What that culminated Shaima Qasim queen of beauty even received a phone call from an unknown inviting where to join Daash practice sexual jihad or captivity.According to the newspaper "Okaz 
The paper disclosed that the close of the jury said that Shaima initially felt disturbed because of the connection, but they decided to continue their way declared that winning is a challenge to prove that Iraq is still a country of beauty and culture in the face of terrorism and violence, indicating that it won a humanitarian message will be launched from which to deliver this message to the world to represent Iraq better representation. 
was selected Shaima Qasim Miss Iraq overnight Sunday for 2015 after the intensification of competition between contestants nine. 
The Competition Management Miss Iraq announced on the tenth of September / September 2015 to organize the first contest internationally recognized in Baghdad since 1972.

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http://www.nbcnews.com/news/mideast/student-shakes-threats-win-miss-iraq-name-womens-rights-n483791?cid=sm_fb 

  • Miss Iraq 2015

A 20-year-old economics student has shaken off death threats to rivals and a barrage of criticism to be crowned the first official Miss Iraq since 1972.

"I want to prove that the Iraqi woman has her own existence in society, she has her rights like men," Shaima Qassem Abdulrahman told NBC News. "I am afraid of nothing, because I am confident that what I am doing is not wrong."

 
 Student Wins Miss Iraq after 40 Years of Beauty Pageant Absence 1:07

More than 150 women applied for Miss Iraq pageant, which organizers said was a chance to "create life in Iraq" and "revive our country" after years of bloodshed and internal chaos.

But a backlash saw 15 contestants drop out of the competition, according to one of the judges, Iraqi fashion designer Sinan Kamel. Reuters reported that least two of these women had received death threats.

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Newly crowned Miss Iraq Shaima Qassim Abdulrahman. Karim Kadim / AP

Abdulrahman, from the northern city of Kirkuk, said that she hoped "to reflect the culture of Iraq," adding that Saturday's competition was "not about beauty alone," and it was not just a fashion show.

"I call all Iraqi girls to feel this experience," she said after winning.

Abdulrahman had to convince her parents to let her enter after they initially banned her from participating.

"In the past I heard that such contests used to be held in Baghdad — I dreamed of being a part of one of these contests," she told NBC News in October. She said the Iraqi people were "badly in need of such cultural activities" after the turmoil the country had been through.

Like many Iraqis, Abdulrahman has been directly affected by the violence brought to her country by ISIS. Two of her cousins were members of Iraq's federal police until they were killed while fighting the militants.

Five of her fellow contestants were also forced to find new homes last year afterISIS overran the northern city of Mosul.

151221-miss-iraq-yh-1114a_9a254b73c2671e
Participants wait for judges to determine the winner of Miss Iraq during the final round of judging in Baghdad. AHMED SAAD / Reuters

Iraq has a long history of holding beauty pageants. In the 1930s, women competed at monthly events including "Miss Baghdad" and "Baghdad's Queen of Beauty," according to an article published in Nina Iraq magazine.

Wijdan Burhan al-Deen, who won in 1972, was the last internationally-recognized Miss Iraq. She went on to represent her country at Miss Universe the same year.

Since then, pageants have been held under various monikers but none were in accordance with international standards — a prerequisite for having a shot at Miss Arab and then the global Miss World event. 

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