A 12-year-old model sparks media frenzy after being picked as face of Australian Fashion Week
A 12-year old model has caused an outcry over being picked as the face of Gold Coast Fashion Week in Australia.
Maddison Gabriel was controversially picked as the Queensland event's official ambassador, sparking a media frenzy.
Australian Prime Minister John Howard strongly criticised the decision, stating: 'Catapulting girls as young as 12 into something like that is outrageous.'
Mr Howard also announced he'd like to see Australia follow the example of Europe and ban models younger than 16 appearing on catwalks.
'There should be age limits, I mean there has to be, we do have to preserve some notion of innocence in our society,' he added.
But the youngster, who turned 13 yesterday, insists she deserved to win the competition to become the 'face' of the show.
'I believe that I can fit into women's clothes. I can model women's clothes, so I should be able to do it,' she said.
'It doesn't matter about age, it matters that you can do the job. Modelling is all I've wanted to do since I was six - I don't think I'm too young.'
And the Fashion Week spokesman Kelly Wieler said Maddison was not too young.
'Maddy got in because she was the best contestant - the judges saw that she was fit to do the job.'
She added that the schoolgirl would not be modelling swimwear or lingerie.
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