Young woman denies reports she won Miss Iraq and returned the title

PRAVDA, Russia
April 28 2006

Young woman denies reports she won Miss Iraq contest and returned the
title

04/28/2006 00:42 Source:

A young Iraqi woman has denied reports that she won the Miss Iraq
beauty pageant and returned the title after receiving threats from
Islamic extremists.

“Everything is a big lie and fabricated. I never took part in such an
event and did not even know that a beauty pageant had taken place,”
Tamar Goregian told The Associated Press in a phone interview on
Thursday.

Earlier this month, the American TV network ABC reported that
Goregian had won the Miss Iraq contest which was held in a Baghdad
social club on April 9. She gave back the beauty crown four days
later because she was threatened by religious extremists who called
her as “the queen of infidels” for taking part in a contest that
violated Islamic principles.

The Associated Press reported the ABC story on April 12. A person
familiar with the pageant confirmed the report to the AP but insisted
on anonymity as he said he also feared retribution from Islamic
militants.

Goregian, 29, an engineer and a Christian of Armenian origin, said
she came to Jordan on April 10, the day after the contest, to look
after her mother who was to undergo an operation in the kingdom.

“Those lies caused me fear and worry,” Goregian said Thursday. “The
false reports that I have taken part in the pageant contest and
(received) threats from Muslim groups could expose me to danger.”

“I am afraid to return to Iraq and I’m afraid for my family, who
remained in Baghdad,” she added.

Asked about the person who confirmed the ABC report to the AP,
Goregian insisted that she did not take part in any Miss Iraq
contest.

ABC said that after Goregian handed back the award, the title of Miss
Iraq went to Silva Shahakian, another Iraqi Christian.

Shahakian was quoted by ABC’s “Good Morning America” as saying she
would keep the title, but she planned to change her residence for
personal safety.

“This chance does not come to every girl. So, I’m lucky to have that.
I’m not going to lose it,” she said in the program broadcast April
11.

The network said the pageant organizers are hoping to send Shahakian
to the Miss Universe contest which is due to be held in Los Angeles
on July 23, reports AP,.

From: Emil Lazarian | Ararat NewsPress

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Emil Lazarian

“I should like to see any power of the world destroy this race, this small tribe of unimportant people, whose wars have all been fought and lost, whose structures have crumbled, literature is unread, music is unheard, and prayers are no more answered. Go ahead, destroy Armenia . See if you can do it. Send them into the desert without bread or water. Burn their homes and churches. Then see if they will not laugh, sing and pray again. For when two of them meet anywhere in the world, see if they will not create a New Armenia.” - WS