In a precedent-setting first, a Muslim wearing a hijab has reached the semi-finals of Miss England's Miss England. Maria Mahmoud, 20, skipped past the competition's top competitor, while she promised to wear the Burkinian swimsuit, which is for veiled women, during the competition to wear bathing suits. "Maria," from Birmingham, explained that her friends, family and Muslim community in Britain supported her, but she expected some negative reactions from the "older."\r\nMaria added: "Some people associate with negative things, such as terrorism, Determined to run the contest to challenge these views \u00bb. "It is very rare for a Muslim woman to be in a beauty contest, but there is nothing to prevent us from entering," she said, asserting that her goal is to "empower Muslim women."\r\nMaria, a psychology student, A place in the semi-final after winning second place in the Miss Birmingham contest last week, her first ever contest.