By Daniel Shane
Kingdom tells expats that they must show respect during Islamic holy month
Authorities in Saudi Arabia have threatened to deport non-Muslim expatriates who eat or drink during public during Ramadan.
The Islamic holy month, which started on Wednesday, stipulates that all able bodied Muslims must adhere from eating, drinking and smoking during the daylight hours.
“Non-Muslim residents in the kingdom must not eat or drink in public during Ramadan, in respect to the holiness of Ramadan and the feelings of Muslims,” said a statement posted on the official Saudi Press Agency.
Expatriates who are caught eating, drinking or smoking during the holy month “will be subject to deterrent measures that include terminating their employment contracts and expelling them from the kingdom,” the statement added.
The annual fast during Ramadan is one of the five primary religious obligations of Islam and all Muslims who are able to are required to take part.
Children and the elderly are generally exempt, although non-Muslim foreigners in Muslim majority countries are usually expected to show discretion when it comes to eating and drinking during the daylight hours.
Clearly not a religion of choice but of draconian enforcement. Frightening stuff from KSA!