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Friday, 8 February, 2002, 15:38 GMT
UAE stages first camel beauty contest
Emirati camels
Camels enjoy love and respect in the UAE
The United Arab Emirates has held its first national beauty contest for camels with a prize fond of about $27,000 and various trophies for winners.

"The aim is to mark the respect and love the UAE have for the camel," member of the UAE's National Federal Council Faraj bin Hamouda told the Khaleej Times newspaper.

In a special statement, Mr bin Hamouda stressed that the camel was the best companion of his countrymen during the pre-oil era, and the competition in Abu Dhabi would help to pass that feeling of respect to the younger generation.

The aim is to mark the respect and love the UAE have for the camel

Faraj bin Hamouda
The contest was held in four categories - adults, individuals, under 2 years and the camel studs, with two winners each pocketing top prize of almost $2,000.

Camel is a favourite animal in the countries of the Gulf region, where camel racing is a national sport with huge bets often placed during tournaments.

In 1995 a camel was sold in the UAE for $500,00, and only last month a local man bought a camel who won a big international race for $156,000.

See also:

10 Dec 01 | Middle East
Camels could help cure humans
21 Jan 98 | Sci/Tech
Meet Rama the cama ...
22 Nov 99 | South Asia
In Pictures: Camel trade in the desert
09 Nov 00 | South Asia
In Pictures: India's camel fair
16 Dec 99 | Crossing Continents
Why Emirati weddings are getting less lavish
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