July 01, 2006
YOU will never see topless photos of Australia's entrant for the Miss World beauty pageant, Sabrina Houssami.
The 19-year-old Muslim said she could understand controversy around rival pageant Miss Universe Australia, after winner Erin McNaught's revealing saucy photos were released.
"I think it may be taken out of context because she did the shots a long time ago," Houssami said.
"But at the same time I don't think it's right for her to be put up as a role model for young girls to look up to because, once again, they will focus on image."
Houssami, in Melbourne for a fitting with fashion label Cinema Haute Couture for the month-long finals in Poland in September, said she would also never model swimwear.
The swimwear she has to wear in the finals would be modest, she said.
The University of Sydney student who has also just been accepted into Mensa, a group for the intellectually gifted, said the Muslim community in Sydney had been supportive.
She is keen to break down beauty pageant concepts.
"Every contestant is not an airhead . . . we are very strong-willed, smart women; more ambassadors than typical beauty pageant queens."
She has been compared to Muslim model Michelle Leslie, who made headlines after being jailed over ecstasy tablets in Bali.
"My opinion is that some people are very misinformed," she said.
"Putting yourself in a competition like Miss World is about the charity, which is one of the biggest parts of Islam."
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