Saudi Arabia’s Supreme Court has called on Muslims to look out for the crescent moon on Saturday night, which will mark the start of the Dhu al-Hijjah month.
Dhu al-Hijjah is the final month of the Islamic calendar and marks the start of the Hajj pilgrimage. The first day of Eid Al Adha falls on the 10th day of the month.
“The Supreme Court of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia wishes all Muslims throughout the kingdom to investigate the vision of the month of Dhul al-Hijjah on the evening of Saturday, the twenty-ninth of the month for this year 1439 AH,” a statement carried by the Saudi Press Agency (SPA) said.
“The Supreme Court asks the person who sees it with the naked eye or through binoculars to inform the nearest court, record his or her testimony, or contact the nearest centre to help him reach the nearest court,” it added.
Saudi officials have already declared nine days of holiday for Eid Al Adha in certain sectors.
The Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority (SAMA) announced that banks, finance and insurance companies will be off from Friday, August 17, until Sunday, August 26.
The Saudi Stock Exchange had previously announced that the bourse would suspend trading activities during the Eid holiday, from Sunday August 19 to Sunday, August 26.
On Tuesday, the Kuwaiti Cabinet also announced that public sector employees in the country will remain on leave for a week to celebrate the Eid Al Adha holiday.
The Eid holiday will begin on Sunday, August 19, and end on Thursday, August 23, and work in ministries and government institutes will be halted during the entire week.
Eid Al Adha is likely begin on Wednesday, August 22, a UAE astronomer predicted last month.
Known as the ‘feast of the sacrifice’, Eid Al Adha, honours the willingness of Ibrahim to sacrifice his son to God. Before he could commit the act, God sent an angel to replace the sacrifice with a sheep.
During Eid, Muslims sacrifice an animal in commemoration of this act and divide it into three parts.
One third is for family, one third is for relatives, friends and neighbours and one third is given to the poor and needy.