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All Praise be to Almighty Allah.
Blessing and peace be on His Prophet Muhammad
after whom there is no prophet, and on all those
who followed his way of guidance.
The Islamic Fiqh Council during its 5th session held between 8-16 Rabi Al-Aakhir 1402H (2-10 February 1982) reviewed the resolution of the Brussels Symposium 1400H/1980 as well as the resolution No. 61 adopted by the Senior Ulama Council in Saudi Arabia on 12th Rabi Al-Aakhir 1398H regarding the times of prayer and fasting in the countries where night is very short during certain period of year, and day is short in another period of year, or where sun continuously appears for six months and disappears for other six months.
After having studied the old and new writings on the issue by scholars of the Islamic Fiqh, the Council adopted the following resolution:
The regions which are situated on the high latitudes are divided into three categories:
1. Those regions whereas night or day continues for 24 hours or more according to variation of the year’s seasons. In this situation, timings of prayer and fasting would be calculated according to the nearest region where night and day are distinguished during the 24 hours.
2. The regions where the red light after the sunset continues until Fajr (dawn) and red light of sunrise is not distinguished from the red light of sunset. In these regions, timings of Isha (night prayer), Imsaak (start of fasting) and Fajr (dawn prayer) would be calculated according to time when the red light of sunset and sunrise are distinguished.
3. Those regions where night and day are distinguished during the 24 hours and where night is very long during certain period of the year and day is very long during another period of the year.
Those who reside in regions where night is distinguished from day through dawn of Fajr and sunset, and its day is very long in Summer and very short in winter, it is obligatory for them to pray five times which are well known in the Islamic Shari’ah as Almighty Allah says: “Perform As-Salat (Iqamat As-Salat) from mid-day till the darkness of the night (i.e. Zuhr, Asr, Maghrib and Isha prayers), and recite the Qur’an in the early dawn (i.e. the morning prayer). Verily, the recitation of the Qur’an in the early dawn is ever witnessed (attended by angels in charge of mankind of the day and the night).” (Qur’an, 17:78) He also says: “…Verily Al-Salat (the prayer) is enjoined on the Believers at fixed hours.” (Qur’an, 4:103)
Buraidah (may Allah be pleased with him) narrated that a man asked the Prophet (peace be upon him) about the time of prayer. Upon this he told him: pray with us these two, meaning two days. When the sun passed the meridian, he gave command to Bilal who pronounced Adhan (the call to prayer), then he commanded him so he pronounced Iqamah for Dhohr (noon) prayer. (Then at the time of afternoon prayer) he commanded him so he pronounced Iqamah for Asr (afternoon) prayer while the sun was high, white and clear. Then, he commanded him so he pronounced Iqamah for Maghrib when sun had set. Then, he commanded him so he pronounced Iqamah for Isha (night) prayer when the red light had disappeared. Then, he commanded him so he pronounced Iqamah for Fajr (dawn) prayer when the dawn had appeared. When it was the second day, he commanded him to delay the Dhohr (noon) prayer till the extreme heat had passed and he did so. He allowed it to be delayed till the extreme heat had passed. He observed the Asr (afternoon) prayer when the sun was high, delaying it beyond the time he had previously observed it. He observed the Maghrib (evening) prayer before the red light had disappeared. He observed the Isha (night) prayer when a third of the night had passed. He observed the Fajr (dawn) prayer when there was clear morning light. He (the Prophet) then said: where is the man who inquired about the time of prayer? The man said: Messenger of Allah! Here I am. He (the Prophet) said: The time for your prayer is within the limits of what you have seen. (Muslim)
Narrated Abdullah Ibn Amr Ibn Al-Aas that the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said: The time of Dhohr (noon) prayer is when the sun passes the meridian and a man’s shadow is the same (length) as his height, (and it lasts) as long as the time for the Asr (afternoon) prayer has not come, the time for the Asr (afternoon) prayer is as long as the sun has not become pale, the time of the Maghrib (evening) prayer is as long as the red light has not ended, the time of the Isha (night) prayer is up to the middle of average night, and the time of the Fajr (dawn) prayer is from the appearance of dawn, as long as the sun has not risen, but when the sun rises, refrain from prayer, for it rises between the horns of the devil. (Muslim)
There are other Hadiths which by their wording and practice determine the timings of the five prayers and do not differentiate between the day as being long or short, and likewise between night as being long or short, so long as times of prayers are distinguished through the signs made by Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him).
This was about their times for prayers. As regard times of their fasting during the month of Ramadhan, it is obligatory for Muslims to observe their fasting from the dawn to sunset every day as long as the day is distinguished in their country from the night and total hours of night and day are 24 hours. It is allowed for them to eat and drink as well as have the sensual relationship with their spouses in the night, even though it is short, as Almighty Allah says: “…And eat and drink until the white thread of dawn appear to you distinct from its black thread, then complete your fasting…” (Qur’an, 2:187)
A person who is unable to observe his fasting due to the long day or he is convinced that his fasting would cause serious illness or he is ill and his fasting would increase his illness on the basis of medical check-up, then he should not fast and make up those days in later months, as Allah says: “…Who is present (at his home) during that month, should spend it in fasting but whoever is ill or on a journey, the prescribed period (should be made up) by days later…” (Qur’an, 2:185) He also says: “On no soul does Allah place a burden greater than it can bear…” (Qur’an, 2:286)
Chairman, Islamic Fiqh Council
Abdullah Ibn Muhammad Ibn Humaid
President, Supreme Judicial Council
Deputy Chairman, Islamic Fiqh Council
Muhammad Ali Al-Harakan
Secretary-General, Muslim World League
Abdul Aziz Ibn Abdullah Ibn Baz
General President, Research, Ifta, Da’wah and Guidance
Muhammad Mahmood Al-Sawwaf
Saleh Ibn Othaimeen
Muhammad Abdullah Al-Subaiel
Muhammad Shadhli Al-Neifer
Mustafa Ahmad Al-Zarqa
Abdul Quddoos Hashemi
Abul Hassan Ali Al-Nadwi
Abu Bakr Muhammad Joomi
Hasanain Muhammad Makhloof
Muhammad Rasheed Qabbani
Mahmood Sheith Khattab
Muhammad Salem Abdul Wadood