Muslims across the UK and around the world have marked the end of the holy month of Ramadan by praying together in mosques and meeting up to eat in joyous celebration. Eid al-Fitr marks the end of Ramadan, when Muslims are encouraged to engage in dawn-to-dusk fasting for the month.
Typically a three-day festival, it begins with morning prayers before families mark the new month with gifts of toys and clothes.
British Muslims have been forced to observe Covid restrictions during Eid-al-Fitr for the past two years, placing curbs on the usual festivities including large indoor gatherings.
Around the world, Muslim communities gathered in what for many was their first chance to mark the end of the holy month together.
Similar to Easter Sunday in the Christian calendar, Eid does not fall on the same day every year. Instead, Eid and the period of Ramadan are both determined by a new moon, as Islam follows the lunar calendar.
At the largest mosque in Southeast Asia, tens of thousands of Muslims attended prayers on Monday morning.
The Istiqlal Grand Mosque in Indonesia’s capital Jakarta was shuttered when Islam’s holiest period coincided with the start of the pandemic in 2020 and was closed to communal prayers last year. “Words can’t describe how happy I am today after two years we were separated by pandemic. Today we can do Eid prayer together again,” said Epi Tanjung after he and his wife worshipped at another Jakarta mosque.