Miss World Beauty Pageant Sheds Bikini Portion Out Of Respect For Muslim Country Host Indonesia

In a nod to Indonesia's Muslim population, the Miss World beauty pageant is shedding the bikinis for more conservative wear this September, the Australian Associated Press reports.

"I don't want to upset or get anyone in a situation where we are being disrespectful," Miss World Organization chairwoman Julia Morley told the outlet.

Revealing swimsuits are a staple of Miss World, and they fit into host site Bali's bikini-rich beaches, the article notes. Instead, the 137 contestants will now wear traditional Bali sarongs.

The pageant is covering up in the wake of growing hardliner objections and controversy ignited by a scheduled Lady Gaga visit last year, according to outlets. The singer canceled a show when extremists, branding her a "devil worshipper" in part for her skimpy attire, threatened to torch the venue if she performed.

The Associated Press wrote 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."

The contest will be broadcast live Sept. 28 from the Sentul International Convention Center in Jakarta, according to the pageant website.

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