A beauty pageant for Holocaust survivors was held in Haifa, featuring female survivors walking down a red carpet and sharing details of their travails during World War II.
Fourteen women, aged 74 to 97, participated. Hava Hershkovitz, 79, who had fled her native Romania to survive the Shoah, was crowned the winner.
Organizers called the event a celebration of life, but critics denounced it as trivializing the horrors of the Holocaust. The 14 finalists had been chosen from hundreds of applicants based on their personal stories and later roles in their communities in Israel, according to the BBC.
“It’s not easy at this age to be in a beauty contest,” the silver-haired Hershkovitz said, according to The Associated Press. “But we’re all doing it to show that we’re still alive.”
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