Ramadan holy month ends with Saudi moon sighting

AP News
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Posted: Aug 29, 2011 2:09 PM
Ramadan holy month ends with Saudi moon sighting

Saudi Arabia has announced that the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, characterized by dawn-to-dusk fasting and heightened piety, has ended.

The decision was made after sunset Monday when the new moon was spotted. Muslims follow a lunar calendar.

Saudi Arabia said the three-day Eid al-Fitr holiday that marks the end of Ramadan would begin Tuesday.

Saudi Arabia is home to the main Muslim holy sites.

Egypt and several other Arab countries said they, too, will observe Eid al-Fitr starting Tuesday.

The month of fasting and extended prayer began Aug. 1.

For many Muslims, Ramadan is a spiritual exercise, a lesson in self-restraint and a time for empathy and charity.

It is observed by millions of believers around the world.