Muslims around the world are celebrating Eid al-Fitr, the holiday ends Ramadan, Islam’s holy month of fasting.
In Afghanistan, President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani on Friday touted a three-day cease-fire with the Taliban in an address to the nation to mark the Eid holiday. The cease-fire lasts through Sunday, but Ghani appealed for a lengthier cease-fire and called again for the Taliban come to the negotiating table.
Syrian President Bashar al-Assad attended Friday Eid prayers at a mosque in Tartous, a town in the coastal region that has remained loyal to the leader throughout seven years of civil war.
In Bangladesh, hundreds of thousands of people went to Dhaka’s ferry terminals and train stations in the hope of returning home for the Eid celebrations. Bangladesh is set to celebrate Eid either on Saturday or Sunday, depending on the sighting of the moon.
Eid begins on the first day of the month of Shawwal, the 10th month of the Islamic lunar calendar, but there are regional differences in the timing of Eid because of different interpretations of the calendar.
In Jakarta, thousands of people gathered in front of the Al Azhar mosque to conduct Eid prayers. Indonesia is the country with the largest Muslim population in the world, and this year the government announced more than a weeklong national holiday to mark the occasion.
In Baghdad, thousands of people flocked to shops and markets ahead of Eid. Muslims traditionally shop before Eid and spend the three-day holiday at family gatherings where gifts are exchanged.
In Gaza, top Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh joined about 2,000 worshippers Friday in one of the areas near the border fence with Israel. He pledged protests by the fence would continue and praised a recent U.N. General Assembly resolution that accused Israel of using excessive force against Palestinian protesters.
More than 120 Palestinians have been killed by the Israeli army in near-weekly protests at the fence that began in March. Israeli accuses Hamas of using the protests as cover for militants to attack the border fence with Israel.