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  • Chinese Muslims celebrate end of Ramadan
    2013-08-09    source:Xinhuanet    author:

    Millions of Muslims across China on Thursday celebrated Eid al-Fitr, the festival marking the end of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan -- a season of fasting and spiritual reflection.

    Early Wednesday morning, Muslims from northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region and Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region, as well as other areas, wore festive outfits and attended mosques.

    Muhanmetemin Ismail took his sons to Heytgah Mosque in Kashgar City of Xinjiang at 7 a.m. to listen to imams preach.

    "All my family members except my children observe the fast strictly," Ismail said, who is a craftsman from a nearby village.

    In Yinchuan, capital city of Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region,

    80-year-old Ma Chengyi took his sons and seven grandsons to a preach in the city's Nanguan Mosque.

    "Children are usually trapped by school, but they have to come to the Mosque today. It's the most important ceremony for Muslims," Ma said.

    The local government in Ningxia extended the public holiday to five days, to allow Muslims to have more time to attend religious rituals and visit relatives.

    In Minxian and Zhangxian counties of Gansu Province, which experienced an earthquake last month, 150,000 Muslims prepared traditional delicacies including fried sweets, nuts, fresh fruit, bread and freshly butchered sheep to celebrate the fast-breaking festival.

    During Ramadan, the ninth month of the year in the Muslim calendar, religious followers refrain from eating, drinking, smoking and sex from sunrise to sunset, in an effort to show their devotion to their faith. But children, elderly people and the weak do not have to observe the fast.

    China has 20 million Muslims, about half of which are from the Hui ethnic group.