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Iraq's Parliament Votes To Ban Alcohol

Iraqi lawmakers have voted to ban alcohol across the country.

Iraq's parliament has voted to ban the sale, import, and production of alcohol -- a move that is expected to please influential Islamic parties but anger some non-Muslim minority groups.

Supporters of the ban argued ahead of the October 22 vote that it was justified by Iraq's constitution, which prohibits any law contradicting Islam.

But some opponents argued that the legislation violates Iraq’s constitutional guarantees for the traditions of religious minorities.

The ban was added at the last minute to a draft law on municipalities.

Coming as a surprise to those who oppose such a ban, the passage of the law also came while many were focused on Iraq’s ongoing battle for control of the northern city of Mosul.

The law calls for a fine ranging from $8,000 to $20,000 for each violation.

Yonadam Kanna, a Christian member of parliament, vowed to appeal the law in a federal court.

Based on reporting by AFP and AP