When Yitayish “Titi” Ayenew, the first black Miss Israel, was a young orphan who moved from Ethiopia to Israel, it was learning the Hebrew language that turned around her fortunes.
Miss Lebanon is boycotting this year's Miss Universe pageant, saying she will not participate alongside Miss Israel. Yamit Har-Noy, a 20-year-old member of the Israel Defense Force, called Christina Sawaya's decision "very distressing." "It is only a beauty pageant," Miss Israel said of the competition, which took place May 29 in Puerto Rico. "It has nothing to do with politics."