Muslim nations declare Ramadan begins Monday
Cairo: Religious authorities in most of the Middle East declared that Monday will be the start of the holy month of Ramadan, a period devoted to dawn-to-dusk fasting, prayers and spiritual introspection.
Ramadan begins around 11 days earlier each year. Its start is calculated based on the sighting of the new moon, which marks the beginning of the Muslim lunar month that varies between 29 or 30 days.
Official statements issued on Saturday in Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Lebanon, Syria, the United Arab Emirates, Jordan, Kuwait, Qatar and Yemen said the holy month will start on Monday.
Some countries use astronomical calculations and observatories, while others rely on the naked eye alone, leading sometimes to different starting times in the Middle East.
Political differences and religious disputes between Sunni- and Shi’ite-majority countries in the region also sometimes play a role in different starting dates for Ramadan.
During the month, Muslims are expected to abstain during daylight hours from food, drink, smoking and sex to focus on spirituality. This year, the long and hot summer days are expected to compound the already tough fast.
To help those fasting cope with the heat, Palestinian officials in the West Bank and Gaza said they will push back the clock one hour. That gives some psychological relief, making it seem as if the time for breaking the fast is coming an hour earlier and lengthening the evening hours.
The region is embroiled in dramatic political change and protests, which are likely to be affected by the fasting season that slows the pace of life and changes daily routines.
Download the all new Zee News app for Android and iOS to stay up to date with latest headlines and news stories in Politics, Entertainment, Sports, Technology, Business and much more from India and around the world.
More from India
More from World
More from Sports
More from Entertaiment
- DNA: Exiled Kashmiri Pandits share their heart wrenching stories
- Basic ideals of Constitution are in danger: Sonia Gandhi
- PM Modi greets nation on occasion of first Constitution Day
- Manjula Vaghela's journey: From rag picker to head of a firm with Rs 1 cr turnover!
- Indian Army faces shortage of field firing ranges in J&K
- Woman commits suicide after heated discussion with husband over Aamir Khan's intolerance remark
- Intolerance issue: Those attacking me are only proving my point, says Aamir Khan – Read full statement
- Setback to Kejriwal-led AAP as MLA Akhilesh Tripathi arrested in riot case
- 10 interesting facts about Constitution which every Indian must know
- See pic: Genelia marks son's birthday!