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Eid al-Fitr 2024: Celebrations Around the World

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Eid al-Fitr, also known as the Festival of Breaking the Fast, is a significant religious holiday celebrated by Muslims worldwide. It marks the end of Ramadan, the Islamic holy month of fasting. Muslims around the world come together to celebrate with prayer, family gatherings, new clothes, and sweet treats. However, the festivities in 2024 were overshadowed by the ongoing war in Gaza, which cast a somber mood over this joyous occasion.

Countries around the world celebrate Eid-ul-Fitr 2024

Celebrations in Istanbul

In Istanbul, thousands of worshippers flocked to the Hagia Sophia mosque for the traditional morning Eid prayers. Some carried Palestinian flags and chanted slogans in support of the people in Gaza. The Aya Sofya Mosque, formerly a Byzantine cathedral, was the center of attention as Muslims laid their prayer rugs in the square in front of it. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan sent a message of support to Gaza, calling it a “bleeding wound on the conscience of humanity” and expressing hope for peace, tranquility, and wellbeing for all.

Prayers in Nairobi and Moscow

The war in Gaza was also on the minds of Muslims in Nairobi, Kenya, as they gathered at the Rahma Mosque for prayers. Imam Abdulrahman Musa reminded worshippers not to forget their brothers and sisters in Palestine who have been subjected to unjustified aggression and violence. In Moscow, Muslims gathered to mark the holy festival. The Chairman of the Russian Council of the MU emphasized that Muslims in Russia will not be pitted against each other, referring to a recent terror attack at a Moscow concert hall.

Celebrations in Indonesia

Indonesia, the world’s most populous Muslim nation, witnessed vibrant celebrations of Eid al-Fitr. Nearly three-quarters of the population traveled for the annual homecoming known as “mudik.” This tradition, eagerly awaited by Indonesians, is a time for reconnecting with loved ones after being away for almost a year. Markets buzzed with shoppers buying clothes, shoes, and sweet treats. Flights were overbooked, and bus and train stations were filled with anxious relatives carrying boxes of gifts.

The Significance of Eid al-Fitr

Eid al-Fitr is a holiday that holds great significance for Muslims. It celebrates the conclusion of the month-long fast observed from dawn to sunset during Ramadan. Muslims believe that it was during this month that the text of the Qur’an was revealed to Prophet Muhammad. The festival is an opportunity to show gratitude to Allah for the strength and help provided throughout Ramadan, enabling Muslims to practice self-control and strengthen their faith.

Traditions and Customs

Eid al-Fitr is often referred to as the “Festival of Breaking the Fast” and is marked by various traditions and customs. Muslims gather for prayers, known as “Salat Al Eid,” in mosques or open spaces. The prayers are followed by a sermon where forgiveness, mercy, and peace are sought for all beings worldwide. It is customary to wear new clothes and recite a small prayer called a takbeer while traveling to the mosque. Giving money to the poor, known as “Zakat al-Fitr,” is an important aspect of the celebrations. This act of charity depends on an individual’s possessions. Muslims also exchange greetings and feast with their families, reaffirming the sense of community and togetherness.

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The Spirit of Eid al-Fitr

Eid al-Fitr is a time of joy, gratitude, and unity. Muslims greet each other with the phrase “Eid Mubarak,” which means “blessed festival.” The proper response to this greeting is “Khair Mubarak,” which wishes goodness upon the person who has greeted you. The first Eid al-Fitr was celebrated in 624 CE by Prophet Muhammad and his companions after their victory in the Battle of Jang-e-Badar. This festival holds historical and cultural significance and is a testament to the resilience and strength of the Muslim community.

The Global Impact of the Gaza Conflict

While Eid al-Fitr is meant to be a time of celebration and joy, the ongoing war in Gaza has cast a shadow over the festivities. The humanitarian crisis in the region has worsened, and Israel’s expected offensive in the city of Rafah has heightened tensions. Muslims around the world have expressed solidarity with the people of Gaza, calling for an end to the violence and a resolution to the conflict.

Conclusion

Eid al-Fitr is a significant and joyous occasion for Muslims worldwide. It is a time for prayer, reflection, and coming together as a community. However, the celebrations in 2024 were marred by the ongoing war in Gaza. Despite the somber mood, Muslims around the world continue to demonstrate resilience, unity, and compassion. Eid al-Fitr serves as a reminder of the importance of peace, harmony, and the spirit of togetherness that binds the Muslim community.

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