A Lebanese accountant has won the first ever Miss Big Arabian Beauty contest.
Eliana Neama, a 21-year-old accountant, won the competition, the first of its kind in an Arab country, according to Al Jazeera.
The show was hosted by Lebanese talk show "Ahmar Bel Khat Al Areed." Neama was picked by a panel of four international judges, who chose from a group of 10 contestants from several Arab countries, according to LBC TV.
Al Arabiya reports that the competition "aimed to give overweight Arabian women a chance to feel more confident about their looks and encourage their self-esteem."
@ajstream Freedom comes in many forms,Miss Big Arabian Beauty is a movement. I support the organisers and all participants.
— The Speaking Pen (@GhDedenyo) March 2, 2013
— Allana (@allanahaist) March 1, 2013
As Al Jazeera notes, many Lebanese citizens took to social media after the awards show to praise Neama and the other contestants for their courage in a nation where the standard of beauty generally includes a thin physique.
Incidentally, plastic surgery is also common in the Arab nation, according to The Daily Star's Olivia Alabaster, who writes that "the proliferation of cosmetic surgery in Lebanon is creating an unrealistic standard of beauty, and contributing to the objectification of women."
Similar competitions for plus-sized beauty queens have been held in various countries around the world; among the competitions are the Miss Big Beautiful Woman pageant in Britain and the Miss Large beauty pageant in Israel.
Visit Al Arabiya for more details about the contest, and watch video of Miss Big Arabian Beauty below.
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