NewsMax, April 20, 2006
British authorities are spending taxpayers’ money to rebuild prison toilets so Muslim inmates don’t have to face Mecca while using them.
The Islamic religion prohibits Muslims from facing or turning their backs on the Kiblah — the direction of prayer — when they use the toilet, according to the Sun newspaper in London. Muslim inmates complain that they have to sit sideways on prison toilets to comply with that prohibition.
But now jail officials have bowed to pressure from Muslim leaders and agreed to turn toilets 90 degrees at London’s Brixton prison.
Authorities have refused to reveal the cost of the project, which they say is part of an “ongoing refurbishment.”
Around a quarter of prisoners at the prison are Muslims, the Sun reports.
One Brixton jail officer grumbled: “If they didn’t get locked up for committing crimes they would not have this problem.
“If we weren’t paying for it as taxpayers I’d laugh my socks off.”