Billions of Muslims around the world are marking this year’s Ramadan which started on Thursday with a month-long fasting, in fulfillment of one of the most revered pillars of the Islamic religion – Fasting.
Ramadan got under way in Asian countries including Indonesia, which has the world’s biggest Muslim population at around 225 million people, Malaysia, Sri Lanka and the Philippines.
The beginning of Ramadan was confirmed by Saudi Arabia’s Islamic project this week, with also the crescent moon sighted in many gulf countries.
Ramadan, the ninth month of the Islamic calendar, is observed by Muslims by fasting from sunrise to sunset, in addition to marking a time of increased prayer and charity.
During this holiest month, the Holy book of Quran was revealed to mankind through Prophet Muhammad (PBUH).
In a message to the nation, Somalia President Hassan Sheikh Mohamoud urged citizens of the country to strive to seek divine blessings and forgiveness, besides deliverance from acts that were hellish in nature.
However, the holy season comes at a time of unprecedented turmoil in the Muslim world, with sectarian conflicts in countries such as Syria, Yemen and Iraq, and governments battling Islamist extremists in Lebanon, Libya, Pakistan, Afghanistan and Egypt.
Published: June 18, 2015