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Miss Universe competition to take place in Israel in December

Steve Harvey will return to host the 70th annual Miss Universe competition. File Photo by James Atoa/UPI
Steve Harvey will return to host the 70th annual Miss Universe competition. File Photo by James Atoa/UPI | License Photo

July 20 (UPI) -- The Miss Universe competition is heading to Israel this year.

Organizers announced Tuesday that the 70th annual competition will be held in Eilat, Israel, in December.

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Steve Harvey will return to host the event, which will air live on Fox and Telemundo.

Miss Universe Organization president Paula M. Shugart issued a statement in a press release.

"Israel has been on our shortlist of host countries for a number of years due its rich history, beautiful landscapes, myriad of cultures and appeal as a global tourist destination," Shugart said.

"We look forward to deepening our commitment and creating meaningful cultural conversation, connection and understanding through this partnership," she added.

The three-hour event will see contestants compete in multiple categories, including personal statement, swimsuit, evening gown and interview. The competition will culminate with Mexico's Andrea Meza, who won the 2020 competition, crowning her successor.

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"Being the only Miss Universe crowned during the COVID-19 pandemic has made my reign unforgettable," Meza said. "I hope that the world takes the vaccine as soon as it is available so that, come December, as many people as possible can join the 70th anniversary celebration in Israel."

Ahead of the competition, contestants will explore "the rich history and culture" of Israel with visits to notable locations. In addition, Meza will visit Israel later this summer.

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