A joyous atmosphere has engulfed the Barham Green mosque in Zimbabwe's second largest city of Bulawayo as the Muslim community celebrated Eid al-Fitr, the three-day feast that follows the holy fasting month of Ramadan.
Muslim worshippers thronged the mosque, in the north of the city center, from the early hours on Friday to celebrate the start of the Islamic religious feast.
Abdi Mahamoud, a Muslim resident of Bulawayo, said the festival crowns a month of dawn-to-dusk fasting.
"Ramadan is a month of fasting and a time of reflection, forgiveness and charity. This time is one of the pillars of our religion. If I can put it in simpler terms I can describe it as our Christmas," Mahamoud told Anadolu Agency.
He said that Eid al-Fitr shows unity of Muslim communities around the world, who perform special prayers to mark the occasion either in the open space or mosques.
Mohamoud said that Muslims in Bulawayo have built more than five mosques in the last few years and this is a sign that the religion is growing in the city.
The Muslim worshipper stressed that his religion was a religion of peace.
"This religion teaches respect and this is emphasised by Allah's final messenger Muhammad to Earth. However the international media has portrayed our religion as associating with evil and terrorism,” he said.
Brighton Ngwezi, 20, who embraced Islam two years ago, has recalled his first moments with the Islamic religion.
"It was difficult to come out to the open with my friends because they had a negative perception about Muslims. It took them time to accept me and respect my religion," he told AA.
Ngwezi says he embraced Islam after discussions with his father about the Islamic teachings.
"The teachings of the Quran are very supportive and they instil a lot of discipline in an individual,” said Ngwezi.
“Now I can freely wear my robes and go to the mosque. In my first days it was not something I could do," he added.
Like many Muslims in Zimbabwe, Ngwezi believes that his religion is flourishing in the African country.
"The only hindering factor is that the Quran needs someone who is keen on learning the teachings but it is unfortunate that the youths of today hate learning,” said Ngwezi.
He lamented that Eid is not an official holiday in Zimbabwe, unlike other countries where Islam is more pronounced.
"Here it is difficult because one needs to balance it with work," said Ngwezi.
Zimbabwe, a predominantly Christian country, has a population of about 13 million people.
Muslims are estimated to make up about 1% of the population.
NGOs in Nepal are said to be forcing Nepalese Muslim women into having abortions and using contraceptives.
Ugandan authorities launched on Thursday the country's first national census in 12 years.
The name has spent four years in a row at the top of the list of baby names in Oslo, but this is the first time that Mohammed tops the men's name list for Oslo.
British Muslim and Jewish leaders denounced civilian casualties on both sides of the conflict between Israel and Hamas, expressed hope for a permanent peace and condemned both anti-Semitism and Islamophobia.
With around 250 cases of systematic attacks on Muslims and Muslim places of worship since the end of the country's communist regime 25 years ago, the Mufti Ahmet Aptullov said there had been 12 attacks since 2012.
After years of fundraising, the four-year construction of the state's first mosque is now near completion.
Council President Sheikh Kiyar Mohammed Aman, for his part, said: "Though the Supreme Council is a religious institution, its development wings will work as per the rules and regulations put in place for charity organizations of the country."
Iyad Madani, head of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), said "None of the [Islamic State's] acts or principles align with the tolerant teachings of Islam."
Thousands protested against a spokesperson's defense of decapitation ‘as a way of executing war criminals.’
Speaking at the World Muslim Scholars Union meeting in Turkey's Istanbul, Sabri accused Arab dictatorships and a lack of initiatives by Muslim scholars in tackling the problem of extremism for it rise.
It was not immediately clear what any motive may have been and the identities of either man are yet to be clarified.
For despite a common view that young Muslim women are forced to wear veils by men or their families, studies and interviews point to the opposite in Muslim minority countries where it is often the case that the women themselves choose to cover up.
S. Matthias Mende, a German entrepreneur who converted to Islam in 2008, created the app with the help of Shaikh Mohammed bin Majid Al Maktoum and Abdul Khaliq in the United Arab Emirates.
World famous Egyptian scholar Yusuf al-Qaradawi will be among the speakers, as well as Yemeni scholar Abdulwahhab ad-Daylami and the Mufti of Chechnya Salah Mejiyev.
Mina Hindholm Imam Khatib school will take on students aged 18 and up from Denmark, Norway and Sweden.
At his Friday sermon in Mecca, the imam and preacher of the Grand Mosque in Mecca, Sheikh Abdul-Rahman al-Sudais, decried "mass massacres against humanity" in Gaza, Syria and Iraq.