The world’s longest-running beauty pageant, Miss World, celebrated its 60th anniversary in China on Saturday night with, not for the first time, the odd bit of controversy thrown in for good measure.
The contest was originally supposed to be held in Vietnam, but when it emerged that the proposed site was in an ecological heritage zone and locals were being forcibly evicted from their homes, it was relocated to China.
That meant that Taiwan would not be taking part in proceedings. Then, the hot favourite, Miss Norway, failed to make it into the top five. The speculation is that Beijing was upset with the Oslo-based Nobel Peace Prize Committee awarding the coveted prize to Chinese dissident Liu Xiaobo who is currently being held in prison.
Amidst all the politics, frosty receptions and usual pageantry, Miss United States, 18 year old Alexandria Mills, was crowned Miss World 2010.