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Muslims distribute meat to the homeless

18 December 2007 - Turkish organisations working under the umbrella of the SMHO are going to collect meat during the Feast of Sacrifice. The meat will be used for pizzas (lahmacun) and sausages to be distributed through food banks, shelters for the homeless and social restaurants.

In Amsterdam, meat will be collected at one butcher in Bos en Lommer and two in Noord, one of the latter Moroccan. Imams will call on Muslims to participate in the initiative. Last year, 3,000 pizzas and another 3,000 sausages were distributed. Mikail Günes of SMHO expects that more food will be distributed this year.

The meat will be collected from 20 to 24 December. After it has been processed, it will be distributed from 27 to 31 December. International development organisation Cordaid supports the initiative.

During the Feast of Sacrifice, Muslims who can afford it are expected to sacrifice an animal in remembrance of Abraham’s sacrifice. The meat is to be shared with relatives, friends and the poor. Some Muslims living in Europe instead send money to their countries of origin in order to have an animal slaughtered and its meat distributed there.

Last year, halal food was served at a Christmas dinner in the Diamantbuurt organised by the Red Cross, inciting the indignation of right-wing MP Geert Wilders. However, Günes says the SMHO initiative has only met with positive responses.


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