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Indonesian Muslim Hardliners Vow to Stop Miss World

Publication Date: 
June 7, 2013

Islamic hardliners vowed Thursday to stop the “immoral” Miss World beauty pageant taking place in Indonesia even after organisers agreed this year's contestants would not wear bikinis.

The Hizb ut-Tahrir group slammed the show as like “selling women's bodies”and threatened to hold demonstrations against it, while a group in the province where the final is due to take place also voiced strong opposition.

 More than 130 women will compete in the September event, with some rounds on the resort island of Bali and the final in Bogor outside Jakarta. Bogor is in West Java province, parts of which are considered a stronghold for radicals.

Organisers confirmed on Wednesday the contestants would not wear bikinis during the beach fashion section, to be held in Bali, and would instead wear more conservative attire such as traditional sarongs.

However, the concession was not enough for hardline groups in Indonesia, where some 90 per cent of the 240 million population are Muslims.

“Supporting this event is the same as supporting the selling of women's bodies,” said Ismail Yusanto, spokesman for Hizb ut-Tahrir Indonesia, who also warned the group may organise protests.

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