Ministry of Islamic Affairs on Friday, declared May 24, Sunday, as Eid al-Fitr, signalling the end of the Islamic holy month of Ramadan.
A statement issued by the Islamic ministry on Friday revealed no reliable moon sightings were confirmed across the country, by Islamic nations around the world, nor by trusted scholars to signal the beginning of Shawwal, the 10th month in the Islamic calendar.
Maldives will hence observe the last day of Ramadan on May 23, with Eid-al-Fitr commencing the day after, on May 24, the statement read.
Eid al-Fitr, the festival held to mark the end of the holy fasting month of Ramadan, is celebrated on the first day of Shawwal, the 10th month in the Islamic calendar. The two consecutive days following the day of Eid al-Fitr are predetermined public holidays in Maldives.
In a grimly historic move, Ministry of Islamic Affairs previously suspended congregational prayers in all mosque across the country, in response to the COVID-19 outbreak.
However, as part of plans to ease lockdown restrictions over a relative decline in the rate of virus infections, the government on May 21 authorized nationwide congregational prayers in island communities without a community transmission of COVID-19, is not under lockdown or monitoring status, and on islands that do not have an individual placed in quarantine.
Although Eid prayers will not be performed in the Greater Male' Region over strict restrictions still in place due to rising virus infections in the capital, Malé, citizens around the archipelago rejoiced over the resumption of mass prayers in mosques.