About 15,000 Moslems offered Eid prayers at the London Mosque on Wednesday (14 September) signifying an end to the Moslem holy month of Ramadan.
About 15,000 Moslems offered Eid prayers at the London Mosque on Wednesday (14 September) signifying an end to the Moslem holy month of Ramadan. Most of them live in Britain, however the occasion also attracted Moslem tourists. During Ramadan, faith is demonstrated by abstaining from food, drink and tobacco from sunrise to sunset.
SYNOPSIS: The prayers were held at the mosque in London's Regent's Park. It was the first time that the mosque had been used for the Eid prayers. Built at a cost of about four million pounds sterling (about seven million US dollars), the mosque is now almost complete.
The worshippers represent nearly every Moslem country of the world. Many of them were immigrants from the Indian sub-continent, but diplomats from various Islamic countries also were present.
Traffic congestion forced many people to park their cars a long way from the mosque and make their way to the holy place on foot.
The weather was fine as they waited for prayers to begin.
The mosque has been built for the London Central Mosque Trust and was handed over to the director and religious officials in July. Since then, it's been open to the Moslem community and visitors from all over the world. But although an inspiration to the estimated one million Moslems living in the United Kingdom, it has not been decided whether to admit non-Muslim visitors.
Apart from its religious significance for Britain's Moslem community, the mosque will be a centre of Islamic culture and instruction. Although there are thought to be about 400 mosques in the country, few have been built for the purpose and certainly none approaches the same scale. Almost all the cost has been me by donations from the governments of Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Qatar, Bahrein and the Libyan Jamahiriyah. Saudi Arabia has contributed to its running expenses.