The Belgian Jewish community on Tuesday filed a lawsuit challenging legislation passed last year by the regional parliament in Flanders banning the slaughter of unstunned animals, which outlaws shechita according to Jewish law as well as Islamic halal practice.

The legislation is set to come into force in 2019.

The lawsuit, filed by the Belgian Federation of Jewish Organizations, the Belgian section of the European Jewish Congress and the World Jewish Congress, follows a lawsuit submitted in November against similar legislation passed by the parliament of the Walloon region.

The lawsuit argues that the legislation violates EU law, including the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union, the European Convention on Human Rights, and the Belgian Constitution itself, all of which guarantee freedom of religion.

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