Malaysia Detains US FrozenTurkeys

KUALA LUMPUR - A container filled with 16,953kg of frozen turkeys which was “detained” at the port here when it arrived from the United States on Dec 10 was released on Tuesday night.
calendar icon 14 December 2006
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The Star reader, Joyce Lim from Kuala Lumpur, had complained that she could not buy turkeys in Malacca and Kuala Lumpur.

Lim was informed by the suppliers that the turkeys were still sitting inside containers in Port Klang because turkeys had been classified as non-halal food and some “complications” had arisen.

Selangor Islamic Department (Jais) public relations officer Fakrul Azam Yahya said the department was aware that a container of turkeys had been detained at the port.

“It was due to some technicalities, but the issue has been resolved. In fact, the Malaysian Islamic Development Department (Jakim) had earlier issued a directive allowing for the fast clearance of imported turkeys especially for Christmas," he said.

“We understand the birds are very much in demand during Christmas. The only requirement we wanted from the companies was for them to honestly declare whether the turkeys were halal or otherwise.”

He added that the declaration was important because turkeys were consumed by Muslims as well.

Fakrul confirmed that the container of turkeys from America was not halal.

“There’s no problem with that. Just make the declaration and the turkeys will be allowed in,” said Fakrul.

A port source said the container was detained on Dec 10 because there was some vagueness over the status of the turkeys.

Operators of supermarkets, hotels and restaurants assured customers that there would be turkey for their Christmas dinners.

Source: The Star

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