Who: Miss Iraq beauty pageant
What: Held for the first time since 1972
When: 20 December 2015
Miss Iraq beauty pageant was held for the first time since 1972. It was held on 20 December 2015 at a hotel in the capital Baghdad and involved eight contestants.
In the final event of the pageant, Shaymaa Qasim Abdelrahman was crowned Miss Iraq. She is a 20-year-old from multi-ethnic city of Kirkuk which is situated in the north of Iraq.
In the week running up to the event, the eight finalists embarked on a string of pre-pageant activities, including a visit to a camp for displaced people in Baghdad.
They also participated in a tree-planting ceremony near the ruins of the ancient city of Babylon.
Why the contest assumes significance?
• The contest was held successfully despite the death threats from Islamic militant organistaions like ISIS (Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant).
• It, now, allows Iraq to send its representative for the international Miss Universe contest.
• It has been cancelled for the last four decades due to unrest in the Middle East. For the last time, it was held in 1972 when the country was stable and prosperous.