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Preparing for Ramadan in the refugee camps
by Véronique Saunier
Fasting in a refugee camp is not easy, but by observing Ramadan's rituals refugees are clawing back an element of their own agency.
A week away from the beginning of Ramadan, refugees and NGOs acting in the camps across Greece are getting ready for the annual Muslim ritual that requires its followers to fast from sunrise to sunset for one whole month. This year, the holy month of Ramadan starts on June 6 and will last until July 6.
Despite the harsh living conditions, the expected long days, and hot weather, a majority of refugees – including pregnant women and young children – pledge that they will fast. "Our faith is all we have left and we are not going to give that up too," says Zaida, a Syrian mother of three young boys. She insists her eldest son, Ramadan, aged seven, will fast too.
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