Which countries will have longest fasts this Ramadan?

Over a billion believers will fast during the daylight hours of Ramadan, starting next week

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Iraqi Muslims gather to break their fast during a free collective iftar on a street during the holy fasting month of Ramadan in Najaf, Iraq April 18, 2021. — Reuters/File
Iraqi Muslims gather to break their fast during a free collective iftar on a street during the holy fasting month of Ramadan in Najaf, Iraq April 18, 2021. — Reuters/File

Muslims across the globe are set to welcome the holy month of Ramadan in less than a week, as the blessed period will likely start coming Monday (March 12).

Over a billion believers will fast during the daylight hours of Ramadan.

As per The National News, every year the holy month begins about two weeks earlier. This year, Ramadan will move closer to shorter and cooler days in half of the world. However, the fasting hours will vary across different countries and regions, ranging from 12 to more than 17 hours.

Countries to have shortest fasts

Muslims in Chile, which lies in the southern hemisphere, will have an average of 12 hours and 44 minutes long fasts this Ramadan, which makes up the shortest fasting hours, the publication stated.

Meanwhile, Muslims in other countries in the region — New Zealand, Argentina, and South Africa — will also have 12-13 hours of fasting a day during the month.

Countries to have longest fasts

Muslims in Finland, Greenland, and Iceland, which lie the farthest from the equator, are expected to endure an average of 17 hours of fasting every day.

Scientists drive their snowmobiles cross the arctic towards Kongsfjord during sunset in a nordic country in this undated image. — Reuters
Scientists drive their snowmobiles cross the arctic towards Kongsfjord during sunset in a nordic country in this undated image. — Reuters

However, one may wonder how people in places where it never gets dark fast. Currently, there is no place in the world to expect a midnight sun this Ramadan, but some areas will have exceptionally long daytime during the holy month.

Since enduring a fast for an oddly long duration is neither possible nor required, Muslims in such areas are allowed to follow the schedules of other cities, for example, Makkah, Saudi Arabia.

The fasting hours in Saudi Arabia and much of the Middle East will range from 13.5 hours to 14 hours a day.

Among the Arab countries, Tunisians will experience the longest fast 14 hours and 29 minutes.