The Emirates Astronomical Society and International Union for Astronomy and Space Sciences have calculated when the Holy Month of Ramadan will likely start this year. According to astronomers, Ramadan, the ninth month of the Islamic calendar may begin on Thursday, March 23 this year.
“People will fast for 13 hours and 30 minutes at the beginning of Ramadan but by the end of the holy month, the fasting will last for nearly 14 hours and 13 minutes,” Ibrahim Al Jarwan, chairman of the board of directors of the society told The National. “Most of the Islamic and Arab countries will have Ramadan on the same day this year, but the last day of Ramadan might be different in some countries as it will be difficult in some areas to observe the Moon.”
According to the society, the month of Ramadan will be 29 days long, meaning Eid Al-Fitr, and the first of the month Shawwal will be on Friday, April 21. In the UAE, the official Eid Al Fitr holiday is marked from Ramadan 29 to Shawwal 3, which would correspond to Thursday, April 20 and Sunday, April 23. If the calculations are correct, residents in the UAE can expect a four-day weekend.
Al Jarwan has also shared the likely dates of Eid Al Adha. According to him, the first day of Islamic month Dhul Hijjah is expected to fall on Monday, June 19, which makes Wednesday, June 28 the day of Eid Al Adha. Arafah, which precedes Eid Al Adha is likely to be on Tuesday, June 27, and so the holiday will be observed from Tuesday, June 27, to Friday, June 30.