MIDDLE EAST: Saudi beauty queen attacked for weight
Beauty contests are notoriously catty, and the Miss Arab World pageant in Cairo last week proved no exception.
Muwadda Nour of Saudi Arabia had barely lain hands on her faux-jewel encrusted crown when critics began sniping that at approximately 200 pounds, she "did not meet the required standards" of a beauty queen, according to the popular Arab entertainment site Wikeez.
Delphine Edde, the publisher of Wikeez, confirmed to The Times that the site spoke with organizers and contestants at the event.
Despite the controversy, Nour kept her crown, beating out 15 other young women between the ages of 18-24 from around the region.
Jessy Zaher of Lebanon took second place.
The Miss Arab World pageant aims to be more inclusive by allowing veiled and non-veiled women to compete alongside without having to compromise their values for events like swimwear competitions. Instead, the contestants strut down the catwalk in their national costumes.
For more pictures, visit Wikeez's slideshow of the event.
-- Meris Lutz in Beirut
Photo: Miss Arab World 2009-2010 was attacked for being too heavy. Credit: Reuters