Duvar English

Ali Erbaş, the head of Religious Affairs Directorate (Diyanet), has said that 1,003 central mosques across Turkey will each sacrifice an animal to mark the resumption of communal prayers.

“Hopefully tomorrow in all of our provinces, our 1,003 district offices of mufti will give a sacrifice of [an animal] praise at the central mosques to mark our regathering and these sacrificial meat will be distributed to the poor,” Erbaş was quoted as saying by Anadolu Agency on May 28.

On March 16, Turkey announced a nationwide suspension of congregational prayer gatherings, including Friday prayers, in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak.

As the country has started to ease containment measures, it announced that mosques will allow congregations for two daytime prayers (noon and afternoon) as well as Friday prayers starting on May 29. Other daily prayers will be gradually allowed in the coming weeks, Erbaş said.

Following the reopening of mosques, Erbaş will lead the first Friday prayer at the courtyard of Istanbul’s historic Fatih Mosque on May 29.

He said that people coming to mosques have been asked to bring their personal prayer rugs with them and wear masks.

He added that single-use prayer rugs will be offered for use.