Organizers for the Miss World pageant, which is taking place this September in Bali, will be asking the 137 women competing to trade their two-piece bikini’s in for more conservative attire like sarongs for the beach fashion part of the show.
This trade-in comes in effort to not offend Indonesia’s Muslim population following protests from certain Muslim groups, CBS News reports.
“I don’t want to upset or get anyone in a situation where we are being disrespectful,” Miss World Organization chairwoman Julia Morley said. “We treasure respect for all the countries that take part in the pageant.”
“I don’t think Indonesia is the only country that has that culture,” Morley told the Associated Press. “But we like to work in the manner respectful to every country, and I cannot see why when you go to somebody’s country you should not behave respectfully.”
She also added that the outfits had not yet been finalized.
The Associated Press reports that most Muslims in Indonesia, the world’s most populous Islamic country, are moderate, but a small extremist fringe has become more vocal in recent years.
Mukri Aji a prominent cleric at West Java province’s Indonesian Council of Ulema branch – a group vocal about swimsuits being banned from this year’s competition told the Associated Press, “That contest is just an excuse to show women’s body parts that should remain covered. It’s against Islamic teachings.”
The contest will be broadcast live Sept. 28 from the Sentul International Convention Center in Jakarta, according to the pageant website.
Bikinis Banned at Miss World Pageant in Indonesia
No bikinis at this year’s Miss World Pageant. That’s because organizers say they want to respect the conservative ideals of their Indonesian hosts. Instead the women will wear less revealing garb for the beach-wear competition.