The Islamic State group in Iraq and Syria has long imposed a strict ban on alcohol, cursing, smoking and other acts deemed haram, or sinful. But it seems smoking may be the vice that’s most offensive to ISIS, considering the severed head of an ISIS official that was reportedly found last month in eastern Syria with a cigarette in its mouth. “This is not permissible, Sheikh,” a note attached to the nearby corpse read in Arabic, the Los Angeles Times reported Thursday.
While cigarettes are allowed under Islam, the terror group’s severe interpretation of Sharia law declares smoking as a “slow suicide” and thus forbidden in ISIS-controlled areas. The Islamic State — formerly known as ISIS or ISIL — began imposing radical restrictions last year after overtaking large areas in eastern Syria’s Deir Elzur province, which is adjacent to another stronghold and the group’s de facto capital of Raqqa. ISIS imposed the full-face veil for women and banned music as well as the sale of cigarettes and hookah pipes, noting the “financial and health damages” from smoking, according to Al-Monitor.