July 10 - Muslims prepare to mark the start of the holy month of Ramadan. Julie Noce reports.
Muslims in Philippines began fasting and prayers to mark the start of the holy month of Ramadan. Worshipers performed noon prayers at the Golden Mosque, the largest in the Philippine capital. Ramadan is the holiest month in the Islamic calendar when Muslims fast from dawn to dusk. In Malaysia, members of one mosque promoted Ramadan's values of sharing by preparing Burbur Lambuk. The rice porridge is made with beef and coconut milk and was handed out to the poor. And in Pakistan, Muslims are still prepping for the start of Ramadan, set to begin on Thursday. A markets are bustling with shoppers buying spices, figs and sundry goods. Despite the festive atmosphere, though, some residents say rising prices have forced them to forego certain items even during Ramadan. (SOUNDBITE) (Urdu) BANKER, SHAFIQ HASHMI SAYING: "People just look at things and leave. Due to high prices, they can not buy things that they intend to purchase. The government should do something to control the rates so that the people can buy things." Unemployment in the country is officially at 6.3 percent.