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Saudi Arabia imposes strict restrictions during Ramzan month: Loudspeakers prohibited, worshippers ordered to do Iftar inside mosques and more

The mosque authorities are also banned from collecting any funds for iftar or any other reason.

On Friday, 3rd March 2023, Saudi Arabia announced new regulations during the upcoming Muslim month of Ramzan which starts on 22nd March 2023. According to this order, the Ministry of Islamic Affairs, Dawah, and Guidance has imposed strict restrictions on Ramzan practices this year. Loudspeakers in mosques are prohibited as per this order while worshippers are ordered to do Iftar inside the mosques.

Saudi Arabia’s Minister of Islamic Affairs, Abdul Latif Al-Sheikh released the document and also shared it from his ministry’s Twitter handle on March 3. This document has 10 key instructions regarding the Ramzan celebrations in Saudi Arabia. As per this order, during the holy month of Ramadan, imams and the muezzin should not remain absent. If required, they should delegate the task performer for the absence with the permission of the regional branch of the Ministry, and the person acting on their behalf has agreed not to breach the obligation. The permitted time of absence cannot be exceeded.

The order further instructs the imams and muezzins to adhere to the calendar and timings of all the prayers during the month. They are asked to keep the evening prayers short and complete the night prayers with sufficient time so that worshippers do not have to face any inconvenience. At mosques, it is also forbidden to take pictures or use cameras to broadcast worshippers or the recital of prayers by any medium. Also, the Ministry prohibited attendees to mosques from bringing children.

The order says that Iftar for the fasting people – if any – should be in the places prepared for that in the courtyards of the mosque, and under the responsibility of the imam and the muezzin and that the one responsible for iftar for the fasting person should clean the place immediately after finishing the iftar, and not create any temporary rooms or tents and the like to hold the iftar in them. The mosque authorities are also banned from collecting any funds for iftar or any other reason.

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