As celebrations were prepared across the country to welcome Eid Al Fitr and the end of Ramadan, there was no let up for maternity staff on hospital wards in the UAE, who worked through the night to deliver healthy babies.
Parents shared their delight with medical staff to make this year's holy celebrations extra special up and down the country as new additions were welcomed into families.
Some were planned, others arrived by chance — but each was given the same loving welcome by parents, doctors and nurses as dawn broke on Eid Al Fitr.
A first child born to new parents is a life-changing time of joy and was experienced by Prisilla and Ruben Thomas, an Indian oil terminal worker, at NMC Specialty Hospital, Al Ain.
But it wasn’t an easy birth. Weighing 2.8kg, Ben arrived shortly after 3am by emergency Caesarean section after doctors found him to be in foetal distress.
Mother and son are doing well and will leave the ward in a few days after a short period of recovery.
“This is our firstborn child, so we're very delicate and particular with everything,” said Ms Thomas.
“The tender love and care of the nursing staff plus the doctor’s extra mile in handling my delivery made our experience more than we had expected.”
On a nearby ward, Huda Khadeer Mohammed was in labour and about to give birth to her third child, with husband Mohammed Nissar Ahmed, who is a mechanical engineer from India, close by.
At 5.29am, Mohammed Hamdan arrived by natural birth, weighing 3.75kg.
Elsewhere in the capital, a girl called Gazal was born at Medeor Hospital, moments after midnight.
Gazal was born to Moroccan mother Touria Kadouri and Egyptian father Ahmed Moheb.
“We are always happy to be a part of such joyous moments in people’s lives,” said Dr Walid El-Sherbiny, a consultant in obstetrics and gynaecology.
“Delivering a baby is always a special event, and to do so on a day as significant as Eid Al Fitr is truly a blessing.”
In Dubai, Syrian couple Eman Zarak and Nader Hanoun, an accountant, became parents for the fourth time when their daughter Kinda arrived at 6.20am.
The family were cared for at International Modern Hospital in Mankhool.
Meanwhile, at RAK Hospital in Ras Al Khaimah, Moroccan parents Fatima Zahra and Badr El Ammari were anxiously waiting to give birth to their first child in the hands of obstetrician Dr Lalitha Kamini.
Their wait was finally over at 3.40am when their son was born.
“My feeling was indescribable,” said first-time dad Mr El Ammari.
“The joy of Eid and the joy of Ramadan have mixed vitality. So we are both happy and fortunate to welcome our baby on this day.”
Their son Arbi weighed a healthy 2.6kg.
In Ajman, maternity staff had a busy few hours as mothers were prepared to give birth.
First-time parents Muzahir Ali, 31, and Isra Muneem, 22, from India, were some of the first to welcome a baby on Eid Al Fitr, as their daughter Isra was born at 12.10am.
“This is our first child and although the due date was around the time of the end of holy Ramadan, we were not expecting our bundle of joy to be born on the day of Eid,” said a very happy Mr Ali.
“This is truly a blessing of the Almighty and we are very thankful of the care and support given by the doctors and nurses at Thumbay University Hospital.”