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the Grand Mufti DerianGrand Mufti of the Republic Sheikh Abdul Latif Daryan announced on Tuesday evening that Thursday, June 18, marks the first day of the holy month of Ramadan.

“The crescent moon of the holy month of Ramadan was not spotted this evening. Accordingly, tomorrow, Wednesday … is the 30th day of the month of Shaaban and Thursday, June 18, is the first day of the holy month of Ramadan,” Daryan said in a statement.

The mufti hoped Ramadan will bring “security and serenity to all Muslims and Lebanese.”

Similarly Saudi Arabia confirmed earlier in the day that Wednesday will be the last day of Shaaban on the Islamic calendar, after the kingdom’s moon-sighting committees failed to spot Ramadan’s crescent moon.

The month begins with the sighting of the new moon, which varies from country to country.

Last week, the religious committee of the institution of late Lebanese Shiite cleric Sayyed Mohammad Hussein Fadlallah declared also that Thursday is the first day of Ramadan, citing astronomical calculations.

Vice Head of the Higher Islamic Shiite Council, Sheikh Abdul Amir Qabalan, on Tuesday also called to observe Ramadan crescent as of Wednesday evening.

Throughout the Muslim world, traditional daily fasting begins at sunrise or Fajr, and ends at sundown or Maghrib, when foods prepared especially for the month of Ramadan are eagerly devoured!

The official end of Ramadan begins with the first sighting of the new moon in the night sky, marking the Festival of Fast-Breaking or Eid-ul-Fitr which is observed by families or by entire communities which come together to worship and celebrate the end of Ramadan in thanksgiving of life’s many bounties.

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