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For Muslims, Ramadan in jail can be tough sentence
by Austin Huguelet
Loai Laila and Nelson Hernandez wake up at 4:30 a.m. in their Dallas County Jail cells these days.
Because it's Ramadan, which requires practicing Muslims to fast from sunrise to sunset for an entire month, the two don't have long to wipe the sleep from their eyes and gobble down a quick breakfast of some eggs, a biscuit and chicken sausage.
Then it's back to bed. That meal will have to hold them until after sundown, when they'll get food held from the 4 p.m. dinner given to other inmates.
While federal law requires jails and prisons to accommodate religious observances, Muslim inmates face some difficult challenges during the holy month of Ramadan, which this year ends next week.
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