Asian Muslims Mark Eid Holiday With Food, Prayers and Family

BenarNews Staff
2016.07.06
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In Thailand, homes are full of special holiday food to serve family and guests on Eid-ul-Fitr, July 6, 2016. (Nasueroh/BenarNews)

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Men in Thailand’s Yala province give alms to the poor ahead of the Eid-ul-Fitr celebration, July 5, 2016. (Nasueroh/BenarNews)

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Men in Pattani province in Thailand’s Deep South shop for prayer caps, July 5, 2016. (Nasueroh/BenarNews)

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Malaysian Muslims offer Eid-ul-Fitr prayers at the National Mosque in Kuala Lumpur, July 6, 2016. (AFP)

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A young Malaysian Muslim girl looks on after prayers at the National mosque in Kuala Lumpur, July 6, 2016. (AFP)

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Indonesian Muslims gather to pray outside Al-Mahsun Mosque in Medan to mark Eid-ul-Fitr, July 6, 2016. (AFP)

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A group of Indonesian Muslims offers morning prayers to mark Eid-ul-Fitr on the grounds of the Hati Kudus Jesus church in Malang, East Java, July 6, 2016. (AFP)

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Local youths perform “fire blowing” on the eve of Eid at the compound of the Darussalam Serengan mosque in Solo, Indonesia, July 5, 2016. (Kusumasari Ayuningtyas, BenarNews)

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People jostle to shake hands with Indonesian President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo after Eid prayers at the Great Mosque of West Sumatra in the city of Padang, Indonesia, July 6, 2016. (M. Sulthan Azzam/BenarNews)

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A woman cries while hugging her relative in Mencorek, a village in East Java, Indonesia, July 6, 2016. (Anton Muhajir/BenarNews)

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Indian men offer morning prayers at a mosque in east Delhi, July 7, 2016. (Kshitij Nagar/ Benar News)

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Indian men greet each other after offering morning prayers, July 7, 2016. (Kshitij Nagar/ Benar News)

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Two boys offer prayers on the steps of a packed mosque in east Delhi, India, July 7, 2016. (Kshitij Nagar/ Benar News)

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Bangladeshi Muslims offer Eid-ual-Fitr prayers in Dhaka, July 7, 2016. (AFP)

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A Bangladeshi policeman stands guard as Muslims offer Eid al-Fitr prayers in Dhaka, on the same day that militants carried out a deadly attack near a huge prayer gathering in Kishoreganj district, July 7, 2016. (AFP)

Updated at 12:45 p.m. ET on 2016-07-07

Muslims throughout South and Southeast Asia joined millions of others worldwide to celebrate Eid-ul-Fitr, the religious holiday that marks the end of the holy month of Ramadan.

The holiday was not free from violence. Four people, including two policemen died in an attack in Bangladesh on Thursday, as that country was observing the Eid holiday.

The attack followed Ramadan-time attacks in Bangladesh, Indonesia and Malaysia, which were linked to the extremist group Islamic State, as well as deadly violence in southern Thailand within the past month that caused many to take a more somber approach to their Eid celebrations.

Eid brings families together after a month of dawn-to-sunset fasting. Many people travel great distances to be with loved ones and celebrate with special prayers, alms-giving, gifts and meals.

In Indonesia, the country with the largest Muslim population, locals have a name for the mass exodus, “mudik.” As many as 20 million traveled in preparation for the holiday.

In Malaysia, the faithful opened their homes for the traditional “rumah terbuka,” welcoming all regardless of religious belief and serving a variety of special dishes.

In Thailand, vendors in the predominantly Muslim Deep South region said that people spent less than usual this year in the days leading up to Eid. But on Wednesday, many Muslims opened their homes to families and guests and others offered alms to the poor as they began their celebrations.

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