Muslims celebrate Eid al-Adha as pilgrims conduct Hajj

Muslims are celebrating Eid al-Adha as more than 2 million pilgrims carry out the final days of Hajj in Saudi Arabia.

    Muslims celebrate Eid al-Adha as pilgrims conduct Hajj
    Palestinian Muslims pray to mark the first day of Eid al-Adha in Gaza City [Khalil Hamra/AP Photo]

    Muslims across the world are celebrating the festival of Eid al-Adha, which coincides with the final rites of the Hajj in Saudi Arabia.

    While many will celebrate on Tuesday, millions of others, including in South Asia, will celebrate the start of the religious holiday the day after.

    Eid al-Adha, which in Arabic literally means the "festival of the sacrifice", commemorates the story of the Muslim Prophet Ibrahim's test of faith.

    Muslims believe Ibrahim was commanded by God him to sacrifice his son, Ismail. Tradition holds that God stayed his hand, sparing the boy, and placing a ram in his place.

    The day is marked with the sacrifice of an animal, usually a goat, sheep, or cow, and the distribution of the meat among neighbours, family members, and the poor.

    In the village of Mina, near the Muslim holy city of Mecca, it marks the day, millions of pilgrims perform the symbolic stoning of the devil.

    The five-day-long Hajj is a series of rituals meant to cleanse the soul of sins and instill a sense of equality and brotherhood among Muslims.

    The pilgrimage is required of all Muslims with the financial and physical means to perform it.

    During the last three days of Hajj , male pilgrims shave their heads and remove the white cloth garments worn during the Hajj, known as the 'ihram'. Women cut off a small lock of hair in a sign of spiritual rebirth and renewal.

    Muslims offer Eid al-Adha prayers outside al-Seddik mosque in Cairo [Amr Nabil/AP]

    Eid al-Adha is also known as:

    • Eidul Adha in the Philippines .
    • Eid el-Kabir in Nigeria and Morocco.
    • Tabaski in Senegal and Gambia.
    • Kurban Bayrami in Turkey.
    • Hari Raya Haji in Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore.
    • Eid-e-Qurbon in Iran.
    • Bakri-Id or Qurbani Eid in South Asia.

    Below are some social media tweets marking the festival: 








    SOURCE: Al Jazeera and news agencies


    Interactive: How does your country vote at the UN?

    Interactive: How does your country vote at the UN?

    We visualised 1.2 million votes at the UN since 1946. What do you think are the biggest issues facing the world today?

    'We were forced out by the government soldiers'

    'We were forced out by the government soldiers'

    We dialled more than 35,000 random phone numbers to paint an accurate picture of displacement across South Sudan.

    Interactive: Plundering Cambodia's forests

    Interactive: Plundering Cambodia's forests

    Meet the man on a mission to take down Cambodia's timber tycoons and expose a rampant illegal cross-border trade.