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Thailand: Cultural & linguistic identity

Thailand: Cultural & linguistic identity



IINA - 08

Thailand’s Muslims the first to celebrate Eid

Bangkok, Shawwal 4//Dec 19 (IINA) - The Muslims of Thailand celebrated the Eid-ul-Fitr occasion last Saturday, making them the first Muslims in Southeast Asia to do so, whereas in many other countries of the region the Eid was celebrated along with their brethren in Arab countries on Sunday. The Imam of the Mambang Nighar Mosque, Sheikh Qassim Ahmed, said that the new crescent had been sited on Friday, in the city of Chumburi, about 100 kilometers from Bangkok.

Sheikh Qassim said that there are 180 mosques in the city of Satun, which has a Muslim population of 60,000 - around 20 percent of the total population of 300,000. He said most of the mosques have either been built by individual donations of the country’s Muslims, or by the government, such as the Bambang Nighar Mosque, which cost US$2.89 million.

After the Eid Prayers, the Muslims of Thailand went about celebrating the Eid festivities with their near ones and dear ones, including their non-Muslim neighbors.

According to the year 2000 official statistics, Thailand’s Muslim population is now 6,000,000 (10%) out of a total population of 60 million. The majority of the country’s Muslims are in the southern parts of Thailand, such as Satun, Jala, and Fatani.