The General Presidency for the Affairs of the Two Holy Mosques had suspended spreading iftar sofras and performing i’tikaaf (the practice of staying at a mosque for worship for a certain period of time) at the Grand Mosque in Makkah and the Prophet’s Masjid in Madinah during the last two seasons of Ramadan as part of the coronavirus protocols.
The iftar program has been suspended as part of precautionary measures following the outbreak of coronavirus pandemic since Ramadan 1441, which started on April 24, 2020.
However, the presidency made arrangements to distribute individual ready-made iftar meals for those visiting the Holy Mosques under strict measures. Only bottled water and packets of dates were allowed to serve within the precincts of the Holy Mosques.
Before the outbreak of the pandemic, mass iftar at the Prophet’s Mosque during Ramadan used to provide a unique spiritual experience not only for the people of Madinah but also for the hundreds of thousands of pilgrims and visitors who come to the holy city from different corners of the world.