The General Union of Palestinian Women (GUPW) salutes Miss Malaysia and Miss Indonesia for withdrawing from the Miss Universe 2021 pageant to be hosted by Israel this coming December. GUPW, which represents and defends the rights of Palestinian women around the world, calls on all participants to follow the lead of these two principled participants and withdraw from the competition to avoid being used to fig-leaf the continued crimes of the Israeli regime of colonialism and apartheid against our Palestinian people.
The Israeli occupation has for decades denied our people our inalienable rights in accordance with international law. It continues to target us, and its officials and politicians continue to instigate against our people, particularly women, calling for our murder and rape. Under these circumstances, holding the Miss Universe pageant in “Eilat” is a form of complicity in deepening and whitewashing Israel’s oppression against us as Palestinian women in refugee camps, in Israeli detention centers, in the besieged Gaza Strip, and in our villages whose lands are continually being expropriated by Israel’s occupation forces, particularly in Jerusalem and its neighborhoods.
GUPW strongly denounces the participation of the regimes of the United Arab Emirates (first participation in the country'shistory) and Morocco (first participation in 40 years) in the competition. The only explanation for such a participation is that it stems from a political decision in the context of the budding strategic military-security alliance between these two regimes and the Israeli colonial and apartheid regime. This alliance follows the signing last year of the treason and normalization agreements with Israel, and is an attempt by these two regimes to transfer normalization from the official level to the popular level, where rejection of normalization with the Israeli enemy still prevails.
We strongly condemn the Miss Universe organisers’ complicity with the Israeli propaganda in deciding to hold this competition on the lands of the Palestinian village, Um Al-Rashrash, which was ethnically cleansed in 1948. We reiterate our call on the participants to distance themselves from this complicity by withdrawing from the competition.
The General Union of Palestinian Women