Campaigners on social media are encouraging Germans to place pork in the Halal sections of supermarkets, citing the unethical killing of animals. But although the activists say the campaign is about animal rights, others say it’s an attack on Muslims.
The campaign, which is spreading on social media under the hashtag #HalalChallenge, challenges people to “put pork on the #halalcounter and film it…then post the video to your Facebook timeline, or Instagram, or on YouTube or wherever, then nominate your friend to participate,” according to the official Facebook page.
Supporters of the project say it aims to bring awareness to the methods used to produce Halal meat.
They slaughter like psycho killers…they put knives and cut the animal…without any injection or gas…we try to get it to the public, what it means to slaughter Halal and that’s our…challenge,” one activist told media.
The campaigner went on to state that “we don’t want to have religious rights over animal rights…Islam is taking over in Germany, and they are getting more and more rights, and that’s also a very bad thing.”
However, some have accused the campaign of specifically targeting Muslims in Germany, under the guise of championing animal rights.
“The issue of animal rights is being instrumentalized as a way of targeting Muslims. They wouldn’t dare, for example, do this with regards to the Jewish community and Kosher meat,” Reza Kazim from the Islamic Human Rights Commission said.
He went on to state that scientific evidence has proven that the killing of an animal for Halal meat actually causes less suffering than other slaughtering methods.
According to Deutsche Welle, many of the campaign’s supporters are known for their right-wing activism – not animal rights activism.
The campaign is not the first to use pork, or pigs, as a way of speaking out against the Muslim population. Earlier this month, a pig’s head was dumped at the Moroccan ambassador’s home in France. December saw a string of incidents across the globe, with multiple pigs’ heads, dumped outside a Muslim school in Lancashire, England, and another one dumped outside a Philadelphia mosque. Also in December, a pig’s head was left in the toilet of a Muslim prayer room at an Australian university.
The use of pigs’ heads is believed to be a direct insult to Muslims, who abstain from consuming pork because pigs are considered ‘impure’ animals in Islam.