The fast for the month of Ramadan will start on Monday the 6th of May for Muslims living in Belgium. This was confirmed by the EMB (Executive for Muslims in Belgium), the body which represents Islam, on Saturday evening. The announcement was made once the Theological Council had finished drawing its conclusions after a meeting on Saturday.
Ramadan is the ninth month in the Arabian lunar calendar, which is determined locally according to the first crescent of the new moon, the “night of doubt”. That means Muslims in Belgium and France (for example) will start Ramadan on the same day this year.
It is a period of fasting and prayer, one of the pillars of Islam. During Ramadan, all believers except those considered too fragile must abstain from eating, drinking, smoking and sexual relations from sunrise to sunset. The exceptions are children who have not yet reached puberty, pregnant women, the sick and the elderly.
Ramadan ends with a celebration called l’Aïd Al Fitr, where they break their fast. This year the Ramadan starts 5 May and ends 4 June.