MOSCOW, November 28 (Sputnik) – Businessmen based in Syrian territories occupied by the Islamic State (IS) have adjusted their catering to suit the tastes of foreign militants fighting for the IS in order to survive the ongoing economic crisis, the Financial Times said Friday.
"The economy in ISIS areas is now driven by the foreign fighters. Everything else is at zero," a local businessman from the Syrian city of Raqqa told the newspaper.
To survive the economic crisis caused by three years of civil war, local vendors have started to stock goods specifically for foreign fighters. As a result sales of potato chips, energy drinks, non-alcoholic beer and other types of junk food have increased across the IS-occupied territories.
Most people from the areas occupied by insurgents live on an average of $3 per day, and cannot afford this type of junk food and other accessories of the foreign fighters' lifestyle, according to the Financial Times.
"They govern us in the name of religion, living the good life while everyone else suffers," a local retailer was quoted as saying by the newspaper.
The IS, a Sunni extremist group, also known as the Islamic State of Iraq and Greater Syria (ISIS) or the Islamic State and the Levant (ISIL), has been fighting the Syrian government since 2012. In June 2014, the group extended its attacks to northern and western Iraq, declaring a caliphate on the territories that had fallen under its control.
Some 15,000 people from more than 80 countries have joined the ranks of IS fighters, according to UN estimates.