Safe Ramadan practices in the context of the COVID-19. Interim guidance, 15 April 2020
World Health Organization
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Background: The holy month of Ramadan is marked by social and religious gatherings where Muslim families and friends unite to break their fast together, after sunset during iftar or before dawn during suhour. Many Muslims increase their attendance at mosques during the month and congregate for longer prayers for taraweeh a and qiyam. b Some Muslims also spend consecutive days and nights at mosques during the last 10 days of Ramadan (i’tikaf) for prayers. These traditional and religious practices are regularly observed throughout the month. This year Ramadan falls between late April and late May as the COVID-19 pandemic continues. The transmission of COVID-19 is facilitated by close contact between people, as the virus is spread through respiratory droplets and contact with contaminated surfaces. To mitigate the public health impact, several countries have implemented physical distancing measures aimed at interrupting transmission by reducing interaction between people. These measures are fundamental control mechanisms to control the spread of infectious diseases, particularly respiratory infections, associated with large gatherings of people. Physical distancing measures, including the closing of mosques, monitoring of public gatherings and other restrictions on movement, will have direct implications for the social and religious gatherings central to Ramadan...