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article imageClerics in Aceh Claim Miss Indonesia Brings Shame on Province

By Chris Dade     Oct 12, 2009 in Lifestyle
Islamic clerics in Aceh, an autonomous province of Indonesia which has introduced partial Sharia law, have severely criticized an 18-year-old woman who did not wear a jilbab or veil whilst representing the province in the Miss Indonesia contest.
Qori Sandioriva, born in Jakarta, the capital of Indonesia, to a mother from Aceh, competed against 37 other contestants on Friday and at the end of the contest was crowned Putri Indonesia, or Miss Indonesia.
However clerics in Aceh, a province at the Northern tip of the island of Sumatra, which is the largest island entirely in Indonesia and one of the largest islands in the world, are angry that Ms Sandioriva did not wear a jilbab, a long, loose-fitting coat or garment, or a veil whilst representing their province. Nor did she comply with any other of the norms associated with Sharia Law, said the Jakarta Globe.
Teungku Faisal Ali, Secretary General of the Daya Ulema Association in Aceh, told the BBC that by declining to wear a veil Ms Sandioriva had not upheld the values of the province she was supposedly representing.
The Jakarta Globe quotes Teungku Faisal Ali as saying that the Miss Indonesia contest itself does not bother his association but a contestant failing to reflect the "values and culture of the Acehnese people" is a matter for regret. He also questioned Ms Sandioriva's eligibility to represent Aceh in the contest because her father is Sundanese, an ethnic group from the island of Java, and she is a student in Jakarta.
Ms Sandioriva is saying that the government of Aceh sanctioned her competing in the contest, the province having no official selection process.
The newly crowned Miss Indonesia was asked by the contest's host about her decision not to wear a jilbab or veil. She answered:Hair is beauty, and I am proud of beauty
In 2010 Ms Sandioriva will take her place in the Miss Universe Pageant, and more controversy beckons with the pageant featuring a section in which the participants are required to wear a swimsuit, the Miss Indonesia contest having no such section.
That prospect has prompted Teungku Faisal Ali to declare:Promoting Aceh should not be done by showing genitalia, especially when she competes for the Miss Universe title, which surely will disgrace Aceh even more
On September 18 Digital Journal reported that a law had been passed in Aceh which approved the stoning to death of adulterers and the lashing of homosexuals and those who indulge in premarital sex. Irwandi Yusuf, Governor of Aceh, is reportedly refusing to sign the law.
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