​ISIS destroys shipment of US-made chicken as millions of Syrians starve

Reuters/Stringer
The so-called Islamic State intercepted and destroyed hundreds of boxes of US-produced chicken, which had been part of a humanitarian aid convoy bound for people starving in war-torn Syria.

On Wednesday, the group posted pictures of men and children setting fire to the boxes in the town of Akhtarin in northern Syria, according to the SITE jihadist monitoring service. The militants claimed the chicken had been “slaughtered unlawfully.” According to the boxes’ labels, however, the chicken was halal, meaning slaughtered in accordance with Islamic law. The boxes are emblazoned with the Illinois-based Koch Foods logo.

In the throes of a humanitarian catastrophe, some 9.8 million are in need of food assistance in Syria, according to the UN. The UN estimates that four out of five Syrians live in poverty, and that the country has lost almost 40 years of human development as a result of the ongoing conflict, now entering its fifth year.

The ultra-hardline Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL) has seized huge chunks of territory throughout the Middle East in their quest to create a caliphate. In areas under their control, the group has instated a brutal form of Sharia law. In addition to horrific violence and carnage that has marked IS advances through the Middle East, the groups’ rule has also seen staggering inefficiency and crumbling infrastructure.

In the IS-controlled Syrian city of Raqqa water and electricity are available for a mere three to four hours a day, while garbage piles up for weeks. In Mosul, Iraq, water has become undrinkable after chlorine supplies have run out.