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One-humped beauties take the stage in Saudi Arabia

Sunday, April 02, 2017 - 01:37

More than 50,000 camels participate in the country's month-long annual King Abdulaziz camel festival with this year's prize money equivalent to $31 million dollars. Colette Luke reports.

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It's a beauty pageant for camels in Saudi Arabia... More than 50,000 camels participating in the country's annual King Abdulaziz camel festival this month... This year's prize money: a record 115 million riyals, equivalent to 31 million dollars... The event was started in 1999 by local bedouins who wanted to stage a camel beauty contest... (SOUNDBITE) CAMEL BREEDER, MEHSI AL-DOSSARY, SAYING : "We produce good quality (camels). We, and the Bedouin in general, gather and meet here at the festival, camel merchants come here and buy our camels and they take part in the festival, which is a kind of support for all of society.'' The festival features daily auctions in which camels can fetch anything from $15,000 dollars for an ordinary domestic animal to $270,000 dollars for a prize specimen... Around 10,000 international visitors are expected to attend - including some of the top breeders in the Gulf region... Not only can visitors buy, sell and show off their camels, there are also professionals providing advice on riding and camel care and an exhibition on the role of camels in Saudi history and culture... The festival - which covers 12 miles of the ad-Dhna desert - runs until April 15th with this year attracting families and activities for children to get close to these one-humped beauties...

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One-humped beauties take the stage in Saudi Arabia

Sunday, April 02, 2017 - 01:37