President Anwar Sadat of Egypt on Friday (26 October)] attended early morning prayers at Cairo's El-Hussein Mosque, on the first day of the Eid el-Fitr festival.
President Anwar Sadat of Egypt on Friday (26 October)] attended early morning prayers at Cairo's El-Hussein Mosque, on the first day of the Eid el-Fitr festival. Wearing his uniform as Supreme Commander of the Egyptian Forces and accompanied by other national leaders, President Sadat participated in a service that marked the conclusion of the solemn month of Ramadan.
The city of Cairo was described as "in somber mood" as the festival began. Most families had relatives in the forces and the news of the Israeli advances during and after the first ceasefire agreement had given rise to concern for their safety. The Eid el-Fitr festival is usually a four-day national holiday in Egypt, but most Government offices had cancelled leave for their workers in light of the situation. Cairo's Zoo and city parks, normally packed to capacity on the holiday, were shut under War Regulations. Shops were closed and the streets were comparatively deserted.
Apart from the call to prayers from the minarets, the only distinctive noise over the city was the drone of Soviet transport planes continuing their airlift of supplies. In a message to the nation on the eve of the feast, the Grand Sheikh of Al Azhar, Dr. Abdel Halim Mahmoud, assured Egyptians that "the day of final victory will come."