Saudi Arabia, UAE call on Muslims to sight Eid crescent moon on Thursday.
“The Supreme Court called on whoever sights the crescent moon by naked eyes or through binoculars to report to the nearest court and register their testimony,” the Saudi Press Agency reported.
“The Supreme Court expressed hope that those who are capable of sighting the crescent moon will join committees formed for that purpose in different regions and participate in such efforts that benefit Muslims,” the report added.
A similar call to sight the moon was made by authorities in the UAE on Tuesday.
“The moon-sighting committee has invited all Muslims in the UAE to sight the crescent of the month of Shawwal on Thursday evening, 29th Ramadan, 1444 H, which corresponds to 20th April, 2023,” the Emirates News Agency (WAM) reported.
The UAE committee requested those who spot the crescent moon to contact the authorities on +97126921166 and be directed to the nearest court to record a testimony, WAM reported.
Meanwhile, astronomers in Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates said that Eid al-Fitr could begin on Saturday as the Shawwal moon is expected to be visible by the naked eye on Friday evening and not Thursday, Al Arabiya English previously reported.
Technically, the moon will appear in the sky on Thursday evening, but it will not be illuminated by the sun’s rays and will be difficult to see without specialist equipment, Majid Abu Zahra from the Jeddah Astronomical Society was quoted as saying in the report.
Eid al-Fitr marks the end of the holy month of Ramadan which began on March 23.
Employees in the Kingdom’s private and non-profit sector will enjoy a four-day paid holiday that will begin at the end of work on Thursday, according to an earlier announcement made by the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Development.
In the UAE, the Eid al-Fitr holiday for federal and private sector employees will begin on April 20.
The holiday has been extended until Shawwal 3, which will fall on April 23 or April 24 depending on whether Ramadan lasts for 29 or 30 days.