02/08/2013 06:52 BST | Updated 02/08/2013 07:12 BST

Fatwa On Croissants As Syrian Sharia Rebels Denounce 'Colonial' Pastry That 'Celebrates Oppression Of Muslims'

A fatwa has been issued on croissants in a rebel-held area of Aleppo, Syria.

The crescent pastries have been deemed "haram" (forbidden in Islamic law) because of their colonial influence, according to a report in Arab daily Asharq Al-Awsat, translated by Al-Arabiya.

A copy of the religious ruling, which appears to have been made by Sheikh Abu Mohammed of the Islamic court Hai'aa al-Sharia, has been circulated online.


A fatwa has been issued on croissants in a rebel-held area of Aleppo, Syria

The court looks into anything from murder and rape to "morality" crimes such as drinking alcohol and wearing shorts, Al Monitor writes.

According to the fatwa, the crescent shape of the pastries celebrates European victory over Muslims.

But The Washington Post reveals: "The much-repeated legend that seems to be behind the anti-croissant fatwa - that a baker in Budapest invented the treat after the city repelled an Ottoman invasion (in 1686) - has been debunked by food historians several times over.

"Most agree the bread migrated to France by way of Austria in the early 1800s. And while France did rule Syria for a period before World War II, Austria obviously never did. Then again, Syrian extremists aren't exactly known for their nuance."

In 2011, Al Arabiya compiled a list of "weirdest fatwas", highlighting the banning of a triangle-shaped stuffed pastry in Somalia.

The ultra conservative al Shabaab al-Mujahedin movement issued the fatwa on the sambousak, because it believed the triangle symbolises Christianity's Holy Trinity and should therefore not be consumed by Muslims.

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