71st Miss World to be held in India, shifts from UAE

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, June 9) — The Miss World Organization announced that the 71st Miss World pageant will now take place in India, despite confirming months before that the United Arab Emirates will host this year's competition.

"The Miss World Organization is pleased to announce that India has been chosen as the host country for the highly anticipated 71st Miss World 2023 pageant," Miss World's Facebook post read.

"The decision to award India with this prestigious honor recognizes the nation's rich cultural heritage, its commitment to promoting diversity, and its passion for empowering women," it added.

MWO chairperson and CEO Julia Morley earlier announced in February that the upcoming competition is set in the UAE.

The organization did not cite the reason for the unprecedented move.

MWO said the theme of the upcoming pageant to be held around "November or December 2023" would focus on promoting "charitable causes."

The competition is expected to gather 130 candidates from different countries who will participate in "talent showcases, sports challenges, and charitable initiatives" prior to the coronation night.

"There will be several rounds to shortlist participants taking over a period of one month before the grand finale scheduled in November/ December 2023," the MWO said.

Philippine bet Gwendolyne Fourniol will vie for the country's second Miss World crown after Megan Young in 2013.

Reigning Miss World 2021 Karolina Bielawska from Poland will crown her successor.

She was supposed to relinquish her title in 2022 but the pageant was suspended due to uncited reasons.