Saudi Arabia has announced the commencement of the holy fasting month of Ramadan.
Announcing this on Thursday April 23, 2020, King Salman stated that Ramadan begins on Friday April 24, 2020.
King Salman however said he was saddened that Muslims cannot pray at mosques because of coronavirus restrictions.
“I am pained that the holy month arrives amid circumstances that make us unable to perform group prayers and Taraweeh — special Ramadan night prayers — at mosques due to precautionary measures to protect the peoples’ lives and health in combating the coronavirus pandemic,” the king said in a statement.
“Based on the sighting of the new month’s moon, it has been decided that Friday is the start of the month of Ramadan,” the royal court said.
During this period, Muslims will refrain from eating and drinking from dawn to dusk and gather with family to break the fast in the evening.
But due to the coronavirus, almost all Muslim majority countries have closed mosques and asked people to pray at home in addition to imposing curfews to limit the spread of the deadly virus.
Several Arab countries have eased restrictions on the occasion of the holy month with Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Egypt and other countries reducing the duration of the lockdowns.