Biggest moments you missed at Miss Universe 2018: Who won, near falls and forgotten words

Miss Universe 2018 brought women from across 94 nations together for the biggest pageant in the world. 

The contestants gathered in Bangkok Sunday night for a live, three-hour special that featured everything from a swimsuit competition and evening gown showing to the infamous final question. 

If you didn't tune in, don't worry. We have complied the moments you missed:

Steve Harvey returned to host Miss Universe, but it appears he will never live down his infamous gaffe of crowning the wrong contestant in 2015.

While introducing the top 20, Harvey asked Miss Costa Rica Natalia Carvajal (who is a TV host in her country) for any tips for the night. 

Carvajal teased: "If they give you a really important envelope, try to read carefully." As the crowd roared in laughter, Harvey replied: "You just can't let it go."

Miss Spain Angela Ponce made history as the first transgender woman in the competition. Although she did not make the top 20, Ponce said she was already a winner. 

"I don't need to win Miss Universe," she said during an emotional video about her journey to finding her authentic self. "I only need to be here."

Ponce took the stage, receiving special recognition and a standing ovation from the studio audience. Walking the runway, Ponce hoisted her sash high over her head as she held her other hand over her heart. 

Giving an opening statement about yourself is nerve-wrecking in any setting. Doing so in front of the Miss Universe audience proved to be too much for Miss Jamaica Emily Maddison.

While onstage speaking about overcoming insecurities, Maddison stumbled over her words. It appeared she could not see the teleprompter as she squinted while struggling to find what came next 

She paused momentarily to let out an "awh," while the crowd cheered her through the rest of her message to the world. She did not make it to the top 10, but social media users agreed that she finished strong. 

One user wrote: "You did a great job, #Jamaica, in battling insecurities by finishing your speech. It has been said, sometimes circumstances (get) the best of us. And no one is an exception."

Miss South Africa Tamaryn Green and Miss Nepal Manita Devkota both got tripped up during the evening gown competition. First up was Green, who wore a glamorous, fitted silver dress with a thigh-high split. Green tried to walk slowly down the runway, but her heels ended up getting caught in her gown, prompting her to stop and adjust.

Devkota wore a white and orange asymmetrical ombre gown that flowed effortlessly. She stumbled toward the end of runway but maintained her composure.

Despite struggling down the runway, Green advanced to the final three. Unfortunately Devkota was not so lucky. She was eliminated.  

Miss Philippines Catriona Gray was crowned Miss Universe, becoming the fourth Philippine native to win the crown. 

Gray was a front-runner the entire competition, but her answer to the final question all but solidified her title. The final three were all asked the same question: "What is the most important lesson you've learned in your life and how would you apply it to your time as Miss Universe?"

She talked about visiting the poorest areas in her country and realizing the need to look for the beauty in things and to find the silver lining: "If I could teach people to be grateful, we could have an amazing world where negatively could not grow and foster, and children will have a smile on their face."

 

December 17, 2018

Sources: USA Today

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    en killed, social media in Zimbabwe was circulating a photo of his battered body lying on the reception counter of a local police station. Angry protesters had left him there.</p><p> The 22-year-old was shot in the head, one of at least a dozen people killed since Monday in a violent crackdown by security forces on protests against a dramatic increase in fuel prices.</p><p> Dozens of Zimbabweans have been shot . Others say they have been hunted down in their homes at night, with soldiers and masked people in plainclothes dragging them away, severely beating them and leaving them for dead.</p><p> Some are activists and labor leaders. Others, like Choto, have been in the wrong place at the wrong time. A captain at a small soccer club in Chitungwiza, a town southeast of the capital, Harare, he had been planning to travel to neighboring South Africa next week to look for better-paying teams.</p><p> "He was our future," said his father, Julius Choto, as the family buried him on Saturday. Teammates chanted the team's war cry, handed the family his jersey and carried his coffin. "He was disciplined, respectable and nonviolent. All he cared for was his football. He was a very good footballer."</p><p> His son had been watching the protests from a soccer field, "some meters away from the action," on Tuesday when he was gunned down.</p><p> "Maybe they thought he was an (opposition) activist since he was wearing a red Manchester United jersey," his father told The Associated Press.</p><p> The family only discovered his body the following morning at a local mortuary.</p><p> "I have been robbed," his father said, crying. "He was my only son and his future was bright. I have been robbed by the state."</p><p> Such accounts have quickly undermined the faith of many Zimbabweans in the government of President Emmerson Mnangagwa, who was briefly cheered when he took over after the ouster of longtime, repressive leader Robert Mugabe in late 2017. Since then, the country's already staggering economy has weakened even more.</p><p> Growing frustration over rising inflation, a severe currency crisis and fuel lines that stretch for miles finally snapped after Mnangagwa announced a week ago that fuel prices would more than double, making gasoline in Zimbabwe the most expensive in the world.</p><p> Civic leaders called for Zimbabweans to stay at home for three days in protest. Other people took to the streets. Some looted, in desperation or anger. The military was called in, and with Mnangagwa leaving on an extended overseas trip, the hard-line former military commander and Vice President Constantino Chiwenga was left in charge. A crackdown began.</p><p> In what critics have called an attempt to cover up abuses, the government in the past few days has imposed internet shutdowns across the country, ordering telecoms to block popular social media apps or everything at once.</p><p> The shutdowns have given security forces cover to commit violations "away from the glare of the international community," said Dewa Mavhinga, southern Africa director for Human Rights Watch.</p><p> The reports of abuses come as Mnangagwa prepares to attend the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, appealing for foreign investment in a country he repeatedly says is "open for business."</p><p> At one hospital in Harare alone, the waiting room and corridors were packed with victims.</p><p> "They came at the middle of the night, kicking doors and throwing tear gas to force us out. Once they had rounded all up men in the area, they assaulted us using motorbike chains," one man said.</p><p> Another man with burnt hands said he and others had been forced to put out burning tires with their bare hands. They all spoke condition of anonymity for fear of retaliation.</p><p> Albert Taurai, who had a broken spine, said he had ventured out to look for bread when he saw a group of plainclothes, armed men approaching.</p><p> They struck people with iron bars on the back, thighs and ankles "so that we would not be able to run away," he said. The masked men told them: "Zimbabwe will never be shut down."</p><p> "I am 46 years old," Taurai said. "I have seen both Mugabe and Mnangagwa. This just is worse than Mugabe."</p><p> Zimbabwe's government has defended the response by security forces, blaming the unrest on the opposition and calling it "terrorism."</p><p> The leader of that opposition, Nelson Chamisa, attended the funeral of Choto the soccer player on Saturday, to loud cheers.</p><p> The government should compensate the victims of this week's crackdown, Chamisa said. He said Mnangagwa's government has turned out to be much like Mugabe's.</p><p> "This is a sick government, because no serious government will deploy the military and ammunition on ordinary citizens," he said, Choto's seven-month-old daughter in his arms.</p><p> Follow Africa news at https://twitter.com/AP&#8212;Africa </p>

    1 January 19, 2019
  •  World Economic Forum 2019: What to expect from this year's summit

    World Economic Forum 2019: What to expect from this year's summit

    l leaders will descend on Davos, Switzerland, on Tuesday, as the annual gathering of the World Economic Forum begins. </p><p> The annual summit in the Swiss Alps takes place over four days. Celebrities, academics and members of the media are often invited to promote causes they support. </p><p> “Out of consideration for the 800,000 great American workers not receiving pay and to ensure his team can assist as needed, President Trump has canceled his delegation’s trip to the World Economic Forum,” White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said in a statement. </p><p> This year’s summit may be more notable for who isn’t attending rather than who is. French President Emmanuel Macron and British Prime Minister Theresa May have also pulled of the forum due to domestic crises. </p><p> May is locked in Brexit negotiations while Macron is busy steadying the ship as the Gilets Jaunes protests enter their tenth weekend. </p><p> A number of famous faces, however, will be present. Prince William is expected to talk about mental health. The prime minister of New Zealand, Jacinda Ardern, will address a “range of topics” and Sir David Attenborough will discuss biodiversity. They will be joined by Winnie Byanyima, head of Oxfam International, and Rwandan President Paul Kagame. </p><p> Also attending is Brazil's new president, Jair Bolsonaro. </p><p> The process of choosing who will be invited to the forum is complicated, as members “haggle” over who to invite for months. </p><p> “This is something they are working on all year,” Sörbom told ABC News. “There is constant haggling within the organization [about] who to invite. Everybody who works within the World Economic Forum has their own [individual] interest" though the broad aim is to secure people from “all walks of life.” </p><p> The forum has been criticized for being out of touch, according to IHS Markit economist and 10-time attendee Nariman Behravesh. </p><p> “In terms of economists there are about half a dozen that they keep inviting back,” he told ABC News. “There are a lot of really good economists in the U.S. and the U.K. and elsewhere that don’t get invited. I don’t really understand why they bring people to say essentially the same thing they said the last year and the year before.” </p><p> The World Economic Forum is an exclusive affair and tickets often cost thousands of dollars. It's also been accused of “serving the elite,” according to Behravesh. </p><p> "They’ve tried to move away from that, but not terribly successfully one has to say,” he added. </p><p> The official engagements take place in the lecture-hall like rooms of the conference center, but most of the business that is conducted occurs in private meetings. The bars, restaurants and cafes of Davos play host to most of these meetings. </p><p> “Davos is a fairly small town,” Sörbom said. “During this week it is totally occupied by the World Economic Forum. It’s not lobbying, and it’s not business, but it is a way of making politicians and business people find each other more easily.” </p><p> Those with primarily business interests will meet with one another, while politicians are more likely to engage in a kind of “informal diplomacy,” she said. </p><p> According to Behravesh, “The private sessions are more interesting. My company is holding one. There you get a much more open dialogue, a discussion among CEOs – a lot of chit chat in the hallways. That exchange is very valuable.” </p><p> “The ideology of the World Economic Forum has changed over time,” according to Sörbom. “They were promoting [free trade and globalization] in the early 1990s.” </p><p> Now, the policy is more social oriented. “You can’t have economic development without social development,” she noted. “It’s a truly liberal organization.” </p><p> “Certainly the mood will be a lot darker [than last year],” Behravesh said. “[Attendees] are worried about the stock market. But I think they’re much more worried about growth slowing in most parts of the world, in particular China. So those are the things that are on their mind.” </p><p> Despite the gloom, he believes world markets are not quite on the verge of a global recession. </p><p> “The chances of a recession this year are still relatively low,” he said. "And the reason we say that is that the policy environment is still quite accommodative to growth.” </p><p> While the forum may be helpful in setting a general agenda, the jury is still out over how much influence it actually has. </p><p> “They’re not going to be able to reign in Donald Trump’s protectionist tendencies – that’s just not going to happen,” Behravesh said. “But they could provide a forum of discussion on the benefits of globalization." </p><p> He continued, “As to how much influence they have on, whether it’s Donald Trump, or the Leavers in terms of Brexit, or the Italian populist coalition, or the Yellow Jackets, I don’t think they’re going to have much influence. Partly because they’re viewed as not representing the people who are left behind, to put it bluntly. It’s a very risky situation – let’s hope the world leaders don’t mess it up.”</p>

    1 January 19, 2019

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