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Abu Dhabi, May 19: The moon sighting committee in United Arab Emirates (UAE) will convene on Friday, after evening prayers, to determine whether the crescent was sighted in Abu Dhabi, Sharjah, Dubai or any other part of the nation. If the new moon would be sighted, then the month of Ramadan would end and Eid al-Fitr would be observed the next day (May 23). Eid Moon Sighting 2020 in Saudi Arabia: When is Hilal Crescent Expected to be Sighted? Know Prospective Eid al-Fitr Dates in KSA.
Theologically, the date of Eid al-Fitr falls on the first day of Shawwal – the Islamic month which succeeds Ramadan. If the moon is sighted on Friday, the 29th of Ramadan, then the first of Shawwal would fall on Saturday. If the crescent remains unseen, then the month of Ramadan would complete the full 30-day lunar cycle and Eid would be observed on Sunday (May 24).
Apart from the moon sighting committees, the Shariah courts would also convene on Friday to accept testimonies from those who have sighted the crescent. Only after testimonies are received by the court, the official announcement of Eid al-Fitr is made by the moon sighting committee.
As per the precedent, attempts to sight the moon begins shortly before Asr prayers. The lookout continues till after Maghrib namaz ends. The official announcement on whether the crescent was seen or not is subsequently made by the moon sighting committee.
According to the Abu Dhabi-based International Astronomical Centre, the chances of crescent being sighted on Friday is bleak, as the moon would set before the sunset. “It is impossible in all Islamic countries due to the setting of the moon before the sun,” Mohammed Odeh, Director of the Centre was reported as saying by The National.
The UAE government has declared holidays in both public and private sectors from 29th of Ramadan to third of Shawwal. If the moon is sighted, then the holidays would begin from the evening of Friday and continue till May 26. If the moon is not seen, then the holidays would begin on Saturday and continue till May 27.