Muslims all around the world are ready to welcome the holy month of Ramadan which begins Tuesday evening in Turkey.
Millions of Muslims will offer their first special evening Ramadan prayer called Tarawih, which will then continue throughout the holy month.
Ramadan is believed to be a time of intense spirituality when the believers are surrounded by angels, the gates of heaven are open, and Allah's blessings and mercy are abundant. But it is also a time of great excitement, filling the cities, especially Istanbul events calendar with jubilant festivities bringing the city to life when the sun goes down.
Fasting, held from dawn to dusk during Ramadan, is one of the Five Pillars (fundamental religious duties) of Islam. It is a time of self-examination and increased religious devotion.
There is also a holy night called Laylat al-Qadr, which means "Night of Power", when the first verses of the Qur'an were revealed to the Prophet Muhammad.
Muslims are instructed to seek the Night of Power during the last ten days of Ramadan, particularly on the odd-numbered nights.
It is reported that the Prophet said, "Whoever stays up (in prayer and remembrance of Allah) on the Night of Qadr, fully believing (in Allah's promise of reward) and hoping to seek reward, he shall be forgiven for his past sins."
Muslims in Turkey will begin fasting on Wednesday.
The holy month will see many of the world's 1.6 billion Muslims commit to a strict daytime fast, often taking the opportunity to make promises to improve their lives.
Muslims throughout the world fast for different hours. Longest fasting takes place In Iceland's capital Reykjavik with 19 hours and 43 minutes, followed by Finland's capital Helsinki with 18 hours and 47 minutes, Stockholm, Oslo and Copenhagen with more than 18 hours.
Turkey's leading aid agencies will help millions of oppressed people in nearly 100 countries across the globe during the Islamic holy month of Ramadan.
The agencies, including Red Crescent, Humanitarian Relief Foundation (IHH), Cansuyu Charity and Solidarity Organization, Sadakatasi and Iyilikder will send aid to millions of people in need across the world.
"We will send aid collected by our volunteers to 10 million needy people in 30 countries around the world including Turkey, Red Crescent head Kerem Kinik has said.
He said the Red Crescent would especially focus on Africa this Ramadan, adding that the charity would also set up an iftar (fast-breaking) tent in Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem during the month.
Deputy Premier Hakan Cavusoglu on Tuesday said Turkey aimed to feed 100,000 Palestinians in the besieged Gaza Strip during the holy month of Ramadan.
In a series of tweets, Cavusoglu said: We aim to feed 100,000 of our brothers during Ramadan, by providing hot meals to 1,000 families daily through TIKA [Turkish International Cooperation and Coordination Agency].
"A total of $1 million in humanitarian aid will be delivered during the month of Ramadan via our TIKA office in Ramallah," Cavusoglu said.
He said a total of 100,000 Palestinians will benefit from the Turkish aid.
Source: Anadolu Agency