Philippine, Indonesian Muslims Congregate for Eid-ul-Adha as Outbreak Deepens

Basilio Sepe
2021.07.20
Taguig city, Philippines
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Muslims pray outside the Blue Mosque in Taguig city, Metro Manila, as they mark Eid-ul-Adha, July 20, 2021. [Basilio Sepe/BenarNews]

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A woman arrives for prayers at a mosque in Metro Manila, July 20, 2021. [Basilio Sepe/BenarNews]

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People offer Eid ul-Adha prayers outside the Darussalam Grand Mosque in Palangkaraya, Indonesia, July 20, 2021. [Reuters]

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Muslims have their temperatures checked before entering the Zona Madina Mosque in Bogor, Indonesia, for prayer services, July 20, 2021. [AP]

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People crowd onto a ferry in Dhaka to head to their hometowns after Bangladesh’s government lifted COVID-19 lockdown restrictions ahead of the Eid-ul-Adha holiday, July 19, 2021. [AFP]

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The morning sky silhouettes worshipers as they attend Eid-ul-Adha prayer services in Taguig city, Philippines, July 20, 2021. [Basilio Sepe/BenarNews]

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Indonesian Muslim women and children pack the Baiturrahman Grand Mosque in Banda Aceh, July 20, 2021. [AFP]

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A woman covers her head with a prayer rug outside the Blue Mosque in Taguig city, Philippines, July 20, 2021. [Basilio Sepe/BenarNews]

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Filipinos in Taguig city, Metro Manila, prepare to slaughter a cow for the “Feast of Sacrifice,” or Eid-ul-Adha holiday, July 20, 2021. [Basilio Sepe/BenarNews]

Muslims flocked to mosques in the Philippines and Indonesia on Tuesday and butchered livestock to mark Eid-ul-Adha, or the “Feast of Sacrifice” holiday, despite their governments urging people not to congregate in public amid virulent waves of coronavirus infections.

President Rodrigo Duterte called for peace in the Catholic-majority Philippines. Muslims make up a small percentage of the population. They are largely concentrated in the south, but at least 110,000 live in Metro Manila, according to the 2015 census.

“I stand in solidarity with you in pursuing our shared goal of building a society that transcends religious, political, and cultural barriers,” Duterte said in a holiday message.

“Let us reach out to one another, set aside our differences, and join hands to overcome the great challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic that we as a people are facing at this time,” presidential spokesman Harry Roque added.

Eid-ul-Adha honors Abraham’s willingness to sacrifice his son to God, who allowed him to sacrifice a ram instead. Muslims butcher cows, goats, lambs and other animals to prepare a feast for friends and family, and to donate to others in need.

In neighboring Indonesia, President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo called on worshipers in the world’s most populous Muslim-majority country to follow health protocols, including wearing masks and maintaining social distance.

“During a pandemic like today, we need a willingness to make more sacrifices. Sacrificing personal interests and putting the interests of the community and others first,” Jokowi said in an Eid greeting broadcast via YouTube on Monday. “May Allah ease all of our steps until we achieve victory against this COVID-19 pandemic.”

In Bangladesh, another majority-Muslim country, the government has lifted all COVID-19 restrictions during a nine-day period that covers Eid, although the nation is in the throes of a severe wave of infections driven by the highly contagious Delta variant.

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