London Mayor: Fasting won’t be easy, ‘it’s the coffee I’ll miss the most’

Sadiq Khan is planning to host Ramadan meals around London not only at mosques but also at synagogues and churches

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It could be cigarettes for heavy smokers, or cold water for those living in sizzling hot climates, but for London’s first Muslim mayor, who is going to fast during the month of Ramadan, coffee is what he is going to miss the most.

Sadiq Khan is among other observant Muslims, who have to abstain from eating, drinking, smoking and having martial relations from dawn until sunset during the holy month of Ramadan.

“As Ramadan starts, I’m aware that it’s a great opportunity to do things in the community and break down the mystique and suspicion around the religion,” he wrote in an opinion column published by Guardian on Sunday.

Setting the caffeinated beverage aside, Khan’s piece also talked about how during this year’s holy month – as London’s mayor – he hopes to break the stigma that is associated with Islam.

The British-born mayor of Pakistani origins - who assumed office on May 9 – hopes to host Ramadan meals around the British capital not only at mosques but also at synagogues and churches.

“The best way for people to understand each other’s faith is to share experiences.” Khan explained. “Fasting is a good way to do this because, when you’re breaking bread with someone, inviting non-Muslims to have that iftar meal together, it shows that it’s not a big deal, nor is it spooky or weird.”

Muslims in the UK will be fasting up to 19 hours a day, which Khan was apprehensive about.

“It’s scary,” he said about the long hours. “My diary is still full for Ramadan – we’ve got the EU referendum coming up and I could even have to open my fast on stage with a glass of water at an event.”

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