Mustn’t offend The Religion Of Peace™! So the bikini competition is out, and “tasteful,” one-piece burkas are in.
Miss World has axed the famed bikinis from this year’s pageant in Indonesia, replacing the skimpy swimsuits with conservative beach sarongs amid mounting protests from hardline Muslim groups, organizers said Thursday.
All of the more than 130 contestants will be required to wear Bali’s traditional long sarongs instead of the sexy bikinis that are historically part of the competition, said Adjie S. Soeratmadjie from the RCTI, the official broadcaster and local organizer.
The pageant will be held Sept. 28 on the resort island of Bali and in Sentul, an area near the capital, Jakarta. Indonesia is the world’s most populous Muslim country.
“There will no bikini in this year’s Miss World pageant to respect our traditional customs and values,” Soeratmadjie said, adding that the London-based Miss World Organization is on board with the decision.
“This is a sensitive issue in Indonesia. We have discussed it since last year and they have agreed,” he said.
How “sensitive” is it? Well, they don’t want to get blown up.
Clerics of the Indonesian Council of Ulema, or MUI, said they would send a letter to President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono to demand that the beauty pageant be canceled.
“That contest is just an excuse to show women’s body parts that should remain covered,” said Mukri Aji, a prominent cleric from West Java province’s MUI branch. “It’s against Islamic teachings.”
Hizbut Tahrir Indonesia, a hardline Islamic group, said it planned to stage a protest and called for the competition to be moved elsewhere.
They have pushed through controversial laws — including an anti-pornography bill — and have been known to attack anything perceived as blasphemous, from transvestites and bars to “deviant” religious sects.
And so we go from