Page last updated at 14:24 GMT, Monday, 26 July 2010 15:24 UK

Prison governor apologises for non-halal food

By Ushma Mistry
BBC Asian Network

A prison
There are differences of opinion on non-halal meat

A prison governor has apologised to Muslim inmates after they were served non-halal burgers.

A number of Muslim inmates at HMP Ford, an open prison in West Sussex, are claiming they were served pork burgers by prison staff on Saturday evening.

A prison service spokesman said: "On Saturday a problem in the kitchens resulted in Muslim prisoners being mistakenly served non-halal food."

It is still not clear exactly what meat was used.

The spokesman added: "The governor is apologising to the prisoners affected and an investigation is under way. The prison is working closely with the Muslim chaplain on this matter."

Muslim inmates are forbidden from eating pork as it is considered a sin but there are differences of opinion on non-halal meat.

Umar Abdullah, an imam in west London, says: "The reason Muslims are not allowed to eat pork is because it's written in our holy book the Koran and it is something our religion forbids.

"There are differences of opinion about eating non-halal meat. Some people say it's OK to eat chicken, lamb or beef which has not been slaughtered according to Islamic law but most Muslims will insist on eating only halal."

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