Miss Upper Egypt Cancelled After Death and Arson Threats
The pageant organiser received calls threatening to kill her and burn her office.
The Miss Upper Egypt pageant, which was set to be held in the Upper Egyptian and ultra-conservative city of Asyout, was cancelled after the organisers received death threats, reports The Telegraph.
10 veiled women were set to compete at the pageant, which was said to be more focused on “inner beauty” rather than physical appearance.
Miss Upper Egypt, the first ever beauty pageant to take place in the Egyptian countryside, wasn’t very well received by the region’s patriarchal society and soon drew criticism in the media.
The competition was cancelled when the hotel chosen to host the pageant refused to go ahead with it after receiving threats of arson should Miss Upper Egypt go down.
Miss Upper Egypt organiser Fatima Bakr also received death threats and said that some callers threatened to “burn down her office.”
The authorities washed their hands of the whole situation, saying that the organisers didn’t apply for security permits, so police forces wouldn’t guard the premise should violent protests erupt.
The hotel’s manager, Mohamed Refaat, said that the event couldn’t take place because it didn’t have the necessary security clearances, and the owner said he was told that “he would be held personally responsible” if things become violent.