a blog with cultural bulimia.

Wednesday, November 12, 2003

Miss Afghanistan Wins Award at Miss Earth - First in Afghan News Worldwide!: "The Miss Earth crown went Sunday to Miss Honduras Dania Prince. Brazil´s Pricila Zandona was selected first runner-up.

Miss Afghanistan Vida Samadzai, condemned in her homeland for parading in a bikini at the Miss Earth contest, failed to make the semifinals but won the pageant´s first "beauty for a cause" award on Sunday.

The 23-year-old Samadzai, the first Afghan in three decades to take part in a beauty contest, she was cited for "symbolizing the newfound confidence, courage and spirit of today´s women" and for "representing the victory of women´s rights and various social, personal and religious struggles." Samadzai could face prosecution if she returns to her native country, a senior Afghan justice official said Saturday.

Fazel Ahmad Manawi, deputy head of Afghanistan´s Supreme Court, told The Associated Press that Samadzai, a college student in California, had betrayed Afghan culture by appearing at the Miss Earth contest in a bikini - and may have also broken the law.

"I hope that this lady regrets her actions," Manawi said. He added that Afghan prosecutors may open an investigation, but refused to say what charges or penalties Samadzai could face."