A statement Re. the commencement of Ramadan and

                                Shauwal 1439HJ – 2018 CE


Praise be to Allah, the Lord of the worlds and may Allah’s peace, blessings and mercy be upon our prophet Muhammad, his family, his companions and those who follow his guidance until the Day of Judgment.  

The General Secretariat of the European Council for Fatwa and Research would like to take this opportunity to appeal to all Muslims to hold fast to Allah’s religion together and to be united in full conformity with the verse in which Allah states:

واعْتَصِمُوا بِحَبْلِ اللَّـهِ جَمِيعًا وَلَا تَفَرَّ‌قُوا  وَاذْكُرُ‌وا نِعْمَتَ اللَّـهِ عَلَيْكُمْ إِذْ كُنتُمْ أَعْدَاءً فَأَلَّفَ بَيْنَ قُلُوبِكُمْ فَأَصْبَحْتُم بِنِعْمَتِهِ إِخْوَانًا وَكُنتُمْ عَلَىٰ شَفَا حُفْرَ‌ةٍ مِّنَ النَّارِ‌ فَأَنقَذَكُم مِّنْهَا ۗ كَذَٰلِكَ يُبَيِّنُ اللَّـهُ لَكُمْ آيَاتِهِ لَعَلَّكُمْ تَهْتَدُونَ 3:103


“Hold on firmly together to the rope of God, and be not divided among yourselves, and remember the favours God bestowed on you when you were one another’s foe and He reconciled your hearts, and you turned into brethren through His grace. You had stood on the edge of a pit of fire and He saved you from it, thus revealing to you His clear signs that you may find the right way perchance.”             

The General Secretariat of the European Council for Fatwa and Research is praying to Allah for the acceptance of Muslims’ fasting, Salah, and their entire good deeds and also for making this month a mark of triumph and blessings for His weakened worshippers, as Allah has the power to deliver.   

Regarding Ramadan’s and Shuwal’s crescent 1439HJ – 2018CE, based on the stipulations adopted by the ECFR in a resolution taken in its 19th session held in the period 08-12 Rajab 1430HJ corresponding to 30th of June – 4th of July 2009, the confirmation made by the International Fiqh Academy in its 18th resolution issued in the third session held in 1986, the approval issued by the United Hijra Chronology in its first session held in Istanbul in the period 26-29 Dhul-Hijja 1389HJ corresponding to 27-30 November 1978, what was issued by the International Conference on Proving the Commencement of the Lunar Months by Islamic and Astronomy Scholars conduced in the period 19-21 of Rabi Al-Auwal 1433HJ corresponding to 11-13 of February 2012 by the Fiqh Academy, Islamic League in Mecca, what was issued by the Scientific Seminar on the commencement of the lunar months and the lunar chronology held in Paris in the period 12-13 of Rabi Al-Auwal 1433HJ corresponding to 4-5 of February 2012 and attended by a great number of Islamic and astronomy scholars, who deliberated on a number of studies of Fiqh and astronomy, and what was recently issued by the Conference of Unifying the Hijri chronology held in Istanbul in the period 21-23 of Sha’ban 1437 corresponding to 28-30 of May 2016, in which more than 70 countries, departments of religious endowments, and Fatwa governorates were represented by officials. It was attended by scholars, jurists and astronomers in addition to representatives of the world’s Fiqh academies that agreed on fundamental criteria among which is the following:

In essence, fasting during the month of Ramadan becomes incumbent upon Muslims by the commencement of the month of Ramadan, provided that it is proved by means of certainty. Scientific astronomical calculations inform us of the timing of true sighting of the crescent in a definitive way in advance.  They can never contradict a true sighting of crescent. The theory that different locations mean different dates is irrelevant since the Prophet’s address is expressed in general terms: “Observe fasting, when seeing it and break fasting, when seeing it.” Agreed upon Also the Prophet, peace be upon him, says: “The day of fasting is the day you fast and the day of breaking the fast is the day you break your fast and the day of sacrifice is the day you offer your sacrificial animals.” Reported by Abu Dauud and Ibn Majjah. At-Tirmithi ranked it as Sahih.  

Based on the above-mentioned argument, the general Secretariat announces the following:    

  1. Accurate astronomical calculations of Ramadan’s crescent 1439 Hijri confirm that the waning of the moon will be at 11.44.48GMT on Tuesday 15th of May 2018 corresponding to 29th of Shaban 1439HJ at 14.47.48 Meccan time.
  2. On the same day after the sunset sighting the crescent will be viable in most of South America and the southern part of North America

Therefore, the blessed month of Ramadan 1439 will commence on Wednesday, May 16, 2018.

Regarding Shuwal’s crescent 1439HJ – 2018CE

Accurate astronomical calculations of Shuwal’s crescent 1439 Hijri confirm that the waning of the moon will be at 19.43.13GMT on Wednesday 13th of June 2018 corresponding to 29th of Ramadan 1439HJ at 22.43.13 Meccan time.

On the same day sighting the crescent will be inviable but viable in all continents on the following day Thursday 14th of June 2018. Consequently, this year’s Ramadan will be made of thirty days.

Therefore, the first day of Shauwal i.e. Eid-ul-Fitr will be on  Friday 15th of June 2018

We pray to Allah for blessing Muslims and granting them honour and protection. May Allah accept our and your good deeds.

The General Secretariat – Dublin