As Ramadan, the Muslim month of fasting, has just begun this week, the Palestinian Authority Mufti has called to “go after” everyone who eats in public and “put them on trial”:
“[PA] Grand Mufti of Jerusalem and the Palestinian Territories and [Palestinian] Supreme Fatwa Council Chairman Muhammad Hussein called to preserve the sanctity of the month of Ramadan (i.e., Muslim month of fasting).
In a statement yesterday the grand mufti demanded that the owners of the restaurants and cafés close them during the daytime hours of the month of Ramadan in order to preserve the sanctity of the month. He called on the responsible parties to go after anyone who publicly breaks the fast and put them on trial.”[Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, May 15, 2018]
This instruction is similar to calls by the highest religious PA authority in previous years. Palestinian Media Watch reported in 2017 that the mufti called on the PA police “to act against anyone who breaks the fast in public, in preparation for legal steps against them.” Likewise, the PA’s Supreme Fatwa Council announced that “breaking the Ramadan fast in public is one of the greatest sins.” The council quoted Islam’s Prophet Muhammad:
“Whoever stops fasting on Ramadan has renounced Islam… [shedding] his blood is permitted”
[Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, May 30, 2017]