The Miss Universe Organization announced on Tuesday that the 70th Miss Universe competition will be held this December in Eilat, an Israeli-occupied Palestinian city.
The competition is being sponsored by the World Miss Universe Organization in collaboration with Israel’s Ministry of Tourism, the Eilat Hotel Association and the Eilat Tourism Corporation.
“We have a spectacular country with amazing citizens who resourcefully and creatively know how to overcome any obstacle,” claimed Israel’s Tourism Minister Yoel Razvozov, according to Israeli news site Mako.
The three-hour event will end with the current Miss Universe, Mexico’s Andrea Meza, crowning her successor, and Steve Harvey will once again return as host.
70 YEARS! 👑 The 70th #MISSUNIVERSE competition is heading to ….Eilat, Israel! 🎉 MISS UNIVERSE will air live around the world December 2021.
— Miss Universe (@MissUniverse) July 20, 2021
Miss Universe President Paula Sugart said, “For several years we have been striving to host the competition in Israel. This year when we were faced with the choice of host country, Israel stood out, also thanks to the way it dealt with the coronavirus.”
Eilat was built in 1952 on the Palestinian southernmost city of Umm al-Rashrash.
In March 1949, Ben Gurion, Israeli Prime Minister at the time, instructed the Israeli occupation forces to make it a fact that ‘Israel’ is the rightful owner of the Negev (and of course, Umm Rash-Rash, which is situated in the Negev’s most northern spot).
The IOF started “Operation Uvda” (in Hebrew, “Uvda” means “Fact”), led by then-Israeli Foreign Minister, Yitzhak Rabin, started their way down to conquer Umm Rash-Rash, destroyed the citizens’ houses and raised the Israeli flag before the city’s police station.