Copy of 2020-04-07T130503Z_44973897_RC2OZF92ML3O_RTRMADP_3_HEALTH-CORONAVIRUS-EGYPT-ECONOMY-1586274208782
Egyptian pensioners collect their monthly pension in a school as Egypt ramps up efforts to slow the spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19), at Shubra El Kheima in Al Qalyubia, Egypt, April 7, 2020. REUTERS/Mohamed Abd El Ghany Image Credit: REUTERS

Dubai: Egypt announced today it will suspend all Ramadan activities and group iftars due to the spread of the deadly coronavirus, Al Arabiya reported.

According to the Ministry of Endowments, the move has been taken as a precautionary measure to prevent the further spread of coronavirus.

Egypt has so far reported 1,322 confirmed coronavirus cases including 85 deaths since the emergence of Covid-19.

The ministry also noted it had previously decided to prohibit the establishment of iftar tables, a tradition Muslims take part in to provide food for the poor during the holy month in the vicinity of mosques or their surrounding space.

The traditions of Ramadan, estimated to begin on April 23 this year, are centered on group gatherings: communal taraweeh prayers, the evening meal of iftar in which Muslims break their fast together, shared food and shisha in Ramadan tents and other religious and social events with family and friends.

Several Muslim countries including Egypt, the UAE and others have suspended group prayers in mosques until further notice to slow the spread of the virus. Saudi Arabia last week asked Muslims around the world to wait and delay their plans for the Haj and Umrah pilgrimages amid uncertainties surrounding the coronavirus pandemic, the Kingdom’s Minister of Hajj and Umrah said.