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Hawaii_Jake's avatar

What are the rules for Ramadan during war?

Asked by Hawaii_Jake (37335points) 4 weeks ago

I sincerely hope this doesn’t turn into a pointless debate of the merits/demerits of the horrible war happening in Gaza. If you wish to debate that, there are other questions for that, and you can ask your own question.

I am genuinely interested to know if the rules of Ramadan change during war. I am not very knowledgeable about how Ramadan is observed other than with prayers and daytime fasting for adults.

I know starvation is widespread in Gaza at the moment, but perhaps someone knows whether ordinary fasting is suspended when war happens during Ramadan.

This question is in the General Section, so please answer with that in mind.

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4 Answers

elbanditoroso's avatar

This is from www.stripes.com:

Q:During Ramadan, we all were told to avoid eating, drinking or smoking in front of Iraqis. We tried this for the first day, only to notice that Iraqi soldiers kept eating, drinking and smoking in front of us. What’s up with that?

A: According to the Quran, fasting, or sawm, is an integral part of the holy month of Ramadan. All adults must forgo food, drink and sex during daylight hours.

However, the Quran grants exemptions to certain people during Ramadan. Among them: children, pregnant or menstruating women, travelers, the ill and soldiers, ostensibly because a hungry army is not a strong army.

Still, many Iraqi soldiers choose to observe the fast, so it’s best to be cautious and considerate in their presence. For more on Ramadan, check out some Web sites such as www.Ramadan.co.uk.

https://www.stripes.com/living/iraqi-soldiers-exempt-from-ramadan-1.60048?=/&subcategory=363%7CSailing#:~:text=All%20adults%20must%20forgo%20food,is%20not%20a%20strong%20army.

Hawaii_Jake's avatar

@elbanditoroso Thanks.

Wikipedia states, “Other individuals for whom it is usually considered acceptable not to fast are those in battle, and travellers who either intend to spend more than five days away from home or travel more than 50 miles.” The rules for combatants seems clear, but I’m wondering also about noncombatants in war zones.

janbb's avatar

Just Googled a bit and found this interesting article from the UN. A different aspect of Ramadan that I never knew:

https://news.un.org/en/story/2024/03/1147726

Hawaii_Jake's avatar

@janbb That’s a good article.

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