Ramadan: Initial fasting days to last more than 15 hours

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Fasting period to decline gradually during month to reach 14 hours and 40 minutes

Muslims will refrain from food for 15 hours and four minutes every day during the early stages of the fasting month of Ramadan this year before the fasting period begins to decline, according to the Met office in the capital.

Ramadan is expected to begin either on July 9 or 10, depending on the sighting of the moon, and Saudi experts expect it to be one of the hottest fasting periods in many years.

June and July also have the longest days during the year and the fasting period during the first days of Ramadan this month will be above 15 hours, the Met office said.

“The fasting hours during the upcoming holy month of Ramadan will be 15 hours and four minutes during the first days of the fasting month…the period will gradually decline through the month to reach 14 hours and 40 minutes towards the end of the month.”

In a statement carried by the semi official daily Alittihad, the Met office said temperatures in the Arabian Peninsula reach their highest level during this period, adding that the highest temperature in many decades was recorded at 52.1 Celsius in July 2002 at noon in a Western border point in the country.

During Ramadan, Moslems refrain from eating, drinking and smoking from dawn till dusk while non-Moslems in the UAE and other Gulf states are also asked to respect Ramadan mood and refrain from eating or drinking in public.

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