Saudi astronomical expert Dr. Khaled al-Zaaq told Al Arabiya that hajj pilgrims’ ritual of gathering at Mount Arafat would land on Oct. 14, although scientifically it would be on Oct. 15 due to the inability of spotting the crescent moon which dictates Islam’s lunar calendar.
He added that the month of Dhul Qada will not be astronomically complete this year which means that the month of Dhul Hijja will begin on Sunday, Oct. 6 according to the Gregorian calendar.
Zaaq also said that spotting the crescent moon is not possible due to its weak illumination, adding the moon will become full on the 14th of Dhul Hijja at 2:37 a.m.
Meanwhile, climate expert Salah al-Salah told Al Arabiya that clouds will begin heading east as of Wednesday.
“The atmosphere in Mecca will not be different than the Arabian peninsula. However, the former’s atmosphere, in addition to Medina’s and the west coast’s, will be more humid. There might be rain clouds but we cannot predict this yet,” Salah added.
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