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Syrians told they can eat dogs, cats and donkeys

Reports of people starving in Damascus suburbs has led to the religious rulings.

Image: Uncredited/AP/Press Association Images

A GROUP OF clerics in Syria has issued a fatwa which gives starving men, women and child permission to eat meats that would usually be forbidden.

According to Al Arabiya News, the religious rulings allow citizens to eat cats, dogs and donkeys that have already been killed in the fighting.

The edict comes following reports of starvation in the rebel-held Damascus suburb of Muadhamiya.

“How does the world sleep with full stomachs while there are hungry people, and not far from the main city [Damascus], just few meters way,” an imam said in a video message, initially broadcast by the Southern Damascus Media Office.

He asked if Muslim pilgrims were “waiting for us to eat the flesh of our martyrs and our dead after fearing our lives?”

You have forgot that you have brothers and sisters in southern Damascus who are hungry.

Speaking to AFP on the eve of Eid, a cleric in southern Damascus said a man in his area recently ate dog meat out of desperation.

“We issued a religious edict allowing people to eat dog and cat meat. Not because it is religiously permitted, but because it is a reflection of the reality we are suffering,” said Sheikh Saleh al-Khatib, who has been on hunger strike for nine days.

“People here have nothing for their children. I am on strike because I want to help save food for others.”

Aid agencies have urged Bashar Assad’s regime to give them access to the areas most affected by the ongoing civil conflict.

It is not the first fatwa to be issued since the violence broke out in March 2011 but it has been used as a cry for help during Eid al-Adha, a Muslim celebratory holiday.

“Of course there is no Eid for the children here” in Moadamiyet al-Sham, a suburb southwest of Damascus, said activist Abu Malek.

“For them, Eid will come when they see a plate of rice and bulgur.”

Additional reporting by AFP

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