World Bulletin/News Desk
South Africa's Muslims celebrated Eid al-Fitr, the three-day festival that follows the fasting month of Ramadan, on Friday, but heavy rains have disrupted the prayers associated with the Islamic religious festival, forcing imams to move the ritual into mosques.
"We were expecting between 5,000-7,000 people to attend the Eid prayers outside this sports ground, but unfortunately due to rain we had to change the venue to a mosque in Erasmia, which is a bit smaller in size," Sheikh Ebrahim Tayob, the organizer of the Pretoria Eidgar, told Anadolu Agency.
He said that Eid prayers were delayed at most venues in the capital Pretoria because of the heavy rains.
"Most Imams I spoke to in different mosques told me they had delayed their prayer time from 8 a.m. to 9 a.m. because of the heavy rains."
Sheikh Imad Kishtah who led the Eid prayers at the Erasmia mosque encouraged Muslims to remain united throughout the year.
"We have been united during the month of Ramadan and I encourage all of you to continue with the same spirit," he told the congregation.
Following the Eid prayers, Muslims in Laudium visited graveyards to pay respects and recite prayers for the dead.
Leading Muslim scholars, meanwhile, hosted a breakfast for members of the community, where recitations of the holy Quran and lectures were given to attendees.
"Let’s continue behaving like we did in the holy month of Ramadan by helping the poor and doing other good deeds which Allah wants us to do," Hafiz Ismail Hazarvi, the Deputy Principal of Darul Uloom Pretoria, told attendees.
He also prayed for peace in Muslim countries which were experiencing civil and political turmoil.
But Muslims in Johannesburg braved the bad weather and attended the prayers in the open space to celebrate the religious feast.
"Despite the drizzling, we prayed outside a sports ground in Mayfair and the turn-out was very good Alhamdulillah," Sheikh Ahmed Mahmud of the Mayfair mosque in Johannesburg told AA.
"On behalf of government and the people of South Africa, I am pleased to celebrate the end of Ramadan by wishing the Muslim community in South Africa and around the world a happy Eid al-fitr," the president said in a statement.
"May this day be one of peace and joy for you and your family," Zille said in statement.
The community enjoys many freedoms compared to those living in other countries and participates in many sectors of the country as politics, business and academia.
There are currently a number of Muslims serving as ministers, professors and high ranking members of the civil service.
South Africa also has an Islamic leaning political party, Al- Jama-ah, which is led by Ganief Hendricks.
The feast is due to start on Monday in Gaza as well as in some other Islamic countries
Monday has been declared a national holiday by the Interior Ministry
The confusion was set earlier Saturday when JNI spokesman Khalid Abubakar said in a statement that Sunday could mark the start of Eid al-Fitr if the new moon was sighted.
Official figures suggest Muslims make up 12 percent of Malawi's 14 million while Muslim groups put the percentage at 36.
Three were hospitalized after a fire broke out in scaffolding.
The Indian Parliament was adjourned as lawmakers called for a debate on an incident in which right-wing Hindu politicians alleged forced a Muslim worker to break fast in Ramadan
A 214-page report found the FBI often targeted vulnerable individuals in sting operations, and subjected convicts to restrictive confinement..
Intellectuals jointly berate Israel's military operations on the besieged territory, which has left almost 600 Palestinians dead since July 7
Sanjay Mitra, 71, has been celebrating Ramadan since 1993, as a sign of solidarity, following the destruction by Hindu militants of the Babri mosque in northern India.
Twahir Kamisi, the 42-year-old the imam of Masjid Sharaf in Mbiko was killed on Saturday.
Mehmet Gormez said Muslims need to put in a joint effort to revive the quintessential values of the Islamic civilization.
The market gets crowded as the fast-breaking time approaches and chefs cook out in the open.
The project, named Al-Quran Al-Akbar (The Biggest Qur'an) features 15 chapters of the Qur'an carved on both sides of 315 revolving timber panels measuring 177cm x 140 cm.
The mosque in the Hungarian capital of Budapest, the Martyr Isa Omer Mosque, is the center where Hungarian Muslims come together and share the fast-breaking iftar dinner.
Nicolo Degiorgis's book Hidden Islam received an award at the Rencontres d'Arles photography festival for highlighting the problem Italian Muslims face in finding a suitable place for worship.
Britain First's "Kent battalion activists" stormed into the mosque's prayer hall with their shoes on, refusing requests from an elderly man to show respect to the place of worship.