Muslims universally will today begin observing the holy fasting month of Ramadan. For the second year, restrictions are in force in some countries during the month.
Many countries, including Egypt, have banned congregational prayers in mosques.
Tunisian Prime Minister, Hichem Mechichi, on Sunday backpedaled on a decision to extend the hours of a night curfew, following concern for people’s livelihoods.
Mr. Mechichi, who has long been at odds with President Kaïs Saïed, had on April 7 announced that a curfew to curb a spike in Covid-19 cases will start at 7 pm, instead of 10pm ahead of Ramadan.
Two days later, he called on the Prime Minister to review the decision, to avoid the loss of thousands of jobs during the holy month in which Muslims fast until sunset.
Last year, African leaders sent special Ramadan messages of hope to Muslims on the continent amid unprecedented restrictions to counter the spread of the virus.
Ramadan is the Arabic name for the ninth month in the Islamic calendar.
It is considered one of the holiest Islamic months.
It’s also one of the Five Pillars of Islam. These are five principles which Muslims believe are compulsory acts ordered by God.
Muslims believe that some of the first verses of the Islamic holy book, the Qu’ran, were revealed to the Prophet Muhammad during the month of Ramadan. Extra emphasis is placed on reciting the Qu’ran at this time.
Fasting is considered to be an act of worship, which enables Muslims to feel closer to God and strengthen their spiritual health and self-discipline.