Par­lia­ment votes to ban al­co­hol

The Myanmar Times - - World -

IRAQ’S par­lia­ment voted to ban the sale, im­port and pro­duc­tion of al­co­hol, in a sur­prise move likely to anger some mi­nori­ties but please in­flu­en­tial re­li­gious par­ties.

Pro­po­nents of the ban ar­gued that it is jus­ti­fied by the con­sti­tu­tion, which pro­hibits any law con­tra­dict­ing Is­lam. Op­po­nents ar­gued that it also vi­o­lated the same con­sti­tu­tion which guar­an­tees the tra­di­tions of re­li­gious mi­nori­ties.

Ac­cord­ing to an MP and a par­lia­ment of­fi­cial, the ban was a last-minute ad­di­tion to a draft law on mu­nic­i­pal­i­ties that caught the anti-ban camp flat-footed.

The law was also passed by MPs in Bagh­dad as all eyes were on the north of the coun­try, where forces in­volved in Iraq’s big­gest mil­i­tary oper­a­tion in years are bat­tling the Is­lamic State group and mov­ing to re­take the city of Mo­sul.

A vet­eran Chris­tian MP Yon­adam Kanna said ev­ery vi­o­la­tion of this law in­curs a fine of 10 mil­lion to 25 mil­lion di­nars (US$8000 to $20,000), adding that he will appeal the law in a fed­eral court.

An MP who voted in sup­port of the ban ar­gued that the con­sti­tu­tion stated “no law that con­tra­dicts the es­tab­lished pro­vi­sions of Is­lam may be es­tab­lished”.

Al­co­hol is rarely of­fered in restau­rants and ho­tels in Iraq, but con­sump­tion is rel­a­tively wide­spread, es­pe­cially in Bagh­dad.

Iraq also has com­pa­nies pro­duc­ing var­i­ous types of al­co­hol, such as Farida beer or As­riya arak (an anise-flavoured spirit). – AFP

Photo: AFP

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Myanmar

© PressReader. All rights reserved.