Eating in public this Ramadan? It could carry some hefty fines in these MENA countries

Published June 4th, 2015 - 10:19 GMT
Eating in public this Ramadan? It could carry some hefty fines in these MENA countries. (Shuttershock)
Eating in public this Ramadan? It could carry some hefty fines in these MENA countries. (Shuttershock)

This Ramadan, those stolen moments in the stairwell with a Twix bar could come at a slightly higher price, at least in Jordan.

According to a newly altered law, eating in public during the Holy Month will carry a heightened fine of 50 Jordanian dinars, with the choice of either one month in jail or 5 additional JDs a day to stay out. This is up from last year’s 15JD fine.

Turns out, skirting the Ramadan fast — which includes abstaining from consuming any food, liquids, smoking and sex — can actually land you with some pretty hefty fines in some MENA countries.

We've gathered up a list of some of the region's laws against eating in public during the Holy Month. Keep in mind, in many of these places, such laws are not often enforced.

Kuwait: $350 fine, or jail time for up to one month.

Egypt: Jail time for up to 3 days, and a fine of 500 Egyptian pounds (about $40), plus one month in jail for restaurant owners who serve food during fasting hours.

Iraq: Jailed for the rest of Ramadan, and released the first day of the Eid holiday (after Ramadan month).

UAE: Not just eating, but drinking and smoking in public could give you 240 hours of community service.

Palestine: Jail time for up to a month.

Saudi Arabia: For Saudi nationals, a judge examines individual cases to determine jail time and a number of lashes. Expats could be kicked out of the country, in addition to a punishment determined by a court.


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