The fasting month of Ramadan will start on August 1 and is expected to last 30 days this year, a well-known UAE astronomer says.
Ibrahim al Jarwan, an astronomy expert based in Sharjah, said the Ramadan hilal (half moon) would be born on July 30 and then set on July 31.
“It will then take shape 21 hours and 23 minutes later…it will be difficult to sight the moon from the UAE but Ramadan will start on August 1,” he said, quoted by the semi-official daily 'Al Ittihad' on Sunday.
He said Ramadan, during which Muslims refrain from eating and drinking from dawn to sunset, would last 30 days this year. “This means Eid Al Fitr will start on August 31,” he said.
During Ramadan, restaurants and cafes in the UAE and other Gulf nations shut most of the day while people of all religions are required not to eat in public. Average maximum temperatures during the coming fasting month will range between 38 and 42 Celsius, according to 'Al Ittihad'.