By Alhaji Alhasan Abdulai
As announced by the National Chief Imam, Sheikh Dr Usman Nuhu Sharubutu, the date for Eid al Fitr celebrations to mark this year’s Ramadan fast in almost all parts of the world is Monday 28th July 2014. This is because the the new moon was not expected on Saturday, 26th July, 2014 in any part of the world as it will be born too late to be visible. This means that Muslims in Ghana were right in announcing the date for the Eid to fall on Monday.
As it is , Central and South America, all of Africa, all of Europe and almost all of Asia except Japan & North Korea and few countries of Oceania will be able to celebrate Eid Al-Fitr 2014 (1435) on Monday, 28th July 2014.
The other countries in the world, mainly in Oceania, also Japan and North Korea as well as some parts of Russia & China will be able to celebrate Eid Al-Fitr on Tuesday, 29th July 2014.
In Google map you will find marked the countries where Eid should be celebrated on 28th July 2014 and also an extensive list of the countries arranged according to the date of celebration of Eid Al-Fitr 2014 (1435).
You will notice from the visibility curves that the new moon will be born on Saturday, 26th July 2014 at 22:41 UTC, very late to be observed on the same day. On the next day, Sunday, 27th July 2014, the new moon visibility can be extended to most parts of the world and, hence, Shawwal can start here on Monday, 28th July 2014 as mentioned in the country list . For the extended visibility, we have chosen the point of reference in the South Atlantic Ocean at 17° West 37° south. You may go on to read Makkah Calendar’s Introduction to understand better the concept of extended visibility as well as that of the point of reference.
In the case of China and Russia, the extension of the zone of visibility on the evening of 27th July 2014 includes the greatest part of these countries. However, a small part of China, to the east of Siping (Jilin province) and a part of Russia, to the east to the Yakutsak are not covered by the extension of the zone of observation. Hence, these parts of both the countries should celebrate Eid al-Fitr 2014 on Tuesday, 29th July 2014.
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