Eid 2022: UAE moon-sighting committee to meet on Saturday

Muslims in the Emirates are being asked to attempt to see the moon to mark the end of Ramadan and start of Eid Al Fitr

The UAE’s moon-sighting committee will look for the crescent moon, which indicates the end of Ramadan and the start of Eid Al Fitr, on Saturday night.

The committee - a group of astronomers, court officials and advisers from the country's Islamic authority - has called on Muslims in the Emirates to look for the crescent of Shawwal on Saturday evening, the 29th day of Ramadan, state news agency Wam reported.

It called on anyone who sees the crescent to call 02-6921166 to be directed to the nearest court to record their testimony.

Earlier, Saudi Arabia’s Supreme Court has called on people living in the kingdom to sight the moon on Saturday night.

If the moon is observed on Saturday, Eid will begin the next day. If not, it will start on Monday.

The holy month lasts for either 29 or 30 days, depending on when the crescent moon is spotted, as the Islamic calendar is based on the lunar cycle.

According to the International Astronomical Centre, Eid is expected to begin on Monday, May 2.

The Emirates Astronomical Society has also forecast that Eid Al Fitr and the first of Shawwal will be on May 2.

Government workers will have a week-long holiday during Eid Al Fitr while private sector workers will have a holiday from Saturday, April 30 until Tuesday, May 3, or Wednesday, May 4, depending on when Eid starts.

Protocols for celebrating Eid Al Fitr were announced by the National Emergency Crisis and Disaster Management Authority on Wednesday evening at an official briefing.

Dr Taher Al Ameri, the authority's spokesman, urged the public to "celebrate this blessed period in health and safety with loved ones, as well as to protect the most vulnerable categories from [coronavirus] infection".

“The protocols include the need to have an active green pass on the Al Hosn app and adhere to relevant precautionary measures,” Dr Al Ameri said.

The updated protocols also include a requirement for worshippers at Eid prayers to wear face masks at all times and maintain physical distancing.

Prayers must not exceed 20 minutes and the gates of mosques should be opened after dawn prayers.

The authority said the public should give Eid presents through electronic means and people should seek to limit celebrations to immediate family members and friends.

Updated: April 30, 2022, 3:50 PM