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Alaska jail sued for feeding Muslims pork, starving them in Ramadan

In this AFP file photo taken on June 17, 2014, Duroc pigs feed on a small farm in Woodward, Iowa.

Muslim inmates at a jail in the US state of Alaska are being “starved” and given pork products during Ramadan, a new lawsuit claims.

For one thing, Muslim prisoners are given food with substantially lower calories compared to other inmates, said the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) in the federal lawsuit filed on Wednesday.

“Officials at the Anchorage Correctional Complex have provided Muslim inmates with less than half the calories they require -- as little as 500 calories on some days – which amounts to a starvation diet.”

#CAIR Lawsuit: Alaska Muslim prisoners being given meager food, pork products during Ramadan

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— CAIR National (@CAIRNational) May 23, 2018

Muslims observing the holy month eat and drink only between sundown and sunrise, but the inmates fall victim to discriminatory behavior from authorities who deny them Halal meals.

This is while officials at the prison are constitutionally forbidden from “compelling inmates to choose between their faith and food.”

“We hope that a court will do what Anchorage Correctional Complex officials will not: ensure that Muslim inmates are not starved or forced to violate the principles of their faith during the holy month of Ramadan,” Lena Masri, the national litigation director for CAIR, said in a statement.

The Alaska Department of Corrections has not yet commented on the lawsuit.

CAIR has demanded a court order for “adequate nutrition, free of pork products” for the prisoners.

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