Muslims celebrating Eid mark the end of Ramadan

Scotland’s First Minister Humza Yousaf sent his best wishes to Muslims celebrating across the world.

The holiday of Eid al-Fitr has ushered in a day of prayers and joy for Muslims in Scotland.

After the Ramadan month of fasting, Muslims celebrate Eid al-Fitr with feasts and family visits.

The start of the holiday is traditionally based on sightings of the new moon, which vary according to geographic location.

In Scotland, First Minister Humza Yousaf sent his best wishes to Muslims celebrating across the world — and reflected on what can be done to help those who are experiencing hardship, grief and struggle.

In a video message he said: “Asalamualikum. Eid Mubarak to everyone in Scotland and across the world celebrating Eid al-Fitr and the end of Ramadan. 

“This is one of my favourite times of the year, not just because we can finally eat after a month of fasting but more importantly it is a time when family, friends and communities come together to celebrate.

“It’s a time of prayer, of reflection, exchanging of gifts and, of course, sharing some fantastic food together.

“And as we mark the end of Ramadan we also reflect on what we can do to help those who are less fortunate than ourselves.

“Those who are experiencing hardship, grief, and struggle, because for Muslims this is a time for empathy, for solidarity, and for community.

“My thoughts are with many Muslim communities who are undoubtedly suffering this Eid, particularly the people of Gaza and in Sudan.

“Those values of empathy, of solidarity and community underpin everything I do as First Minister, and they are central to the key missions of the government that I lead.

“So as we all enjoy new light, new life and new hope at this time of year, I want to send my very best wishes to everybody celebrating Eid al-Fitr.

“And to thank Muslim communities right across Scotland for all you do to make this wonderful, kind and diverse country all that it is.

“Eid Mubarak to all.”

Islam’s holidays follow a lunar calendar.

But some countries rely on astronomical calculations rather than physical sightings.

This frequently leads to disagreements between religious authorities in different countries – and sometimes in the same country – over the start date of Eid al-Fitr.

Hunger in Gaza is overshadowing Eid al-Fitr, a typically joyous festival during which families celebrate the end of the holy month of Ramadan.

Israel halted aid deliveries to Gaza in the early days of the war, but under US pressure has slowly increased trucks allowed to enter the territory.

Still, aid groups have complained that supplies are not reaching desperate people quickly enough, blaming Israeli restrictions, and countries have attempted other ways to deliver them including air drops and by sea.

Nine countries including Britain carried out the largest international aid airdrop since the conflict began, as the Israeli prime minister escalated his pledge to invade the southern city of Rafah.

Led by the Jordanian Armed Forces and coinciding with Eid al-Fitr to mark the end of Ramadan, hundreds of tonnes of resources were delivered into the war-torn enclave.

The US, Germany, France, Indonesia, the United Arab Emirates, the Netherlands and Egypt also took part, the Ministry of Defence said.

The operation, which the MoD said is the biggest international aid drop on a single day since the war began last October, came as Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said “there is a date” for the planned invasion of Rafah.

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