The Philippines military is taking seriously what it believes was a call by the self-claimed Islamic State (IS) for an attack on the Miss Universe that will be held in Manila next year.
The military said on August 12 that a recent bomb-making video posted on social media, apparently made by IS, carried a message in Arabic script reading: “creating a bomb for Miss Universe.”
Authorities have yet to establish the authenticity of the video or determine its source, but they are taking the threat seriously, armed forces spokesman Colonel Edgard Arevalo said.
The Philippines says there are no IS militants in the country. However, IS has accepted the allegiance of the Filipino Islamic militant group Abu Sayyaf.
The country’s Ministry of Tourism, which is helping to organise the Miss Universe pageant, said it is not alarmed by the threat, adding that the authenticity of the video was impossible to verify.
The Philippines hosted the beauty contest in 1974 and 1994. The reigning Miss Universe is model Pia Wurtzbach, the third winner from the Philippines