Tarawih prayers, which take place in Ramadan at the end of the day, held in Al Azhar Mosque. May 25, 2019. Egypt Today/Hussein Talal
CAIRO - 27 May 2019: The Ministry of Endowments has designated specific mosques for Itikaf; however, all mosques across the country are allowed to hold Tahajjud prayers in the last 10 days of Ramadan, Deputy Minister for Mosques Affairs Noah al-Essawy stated.
Itikaf means that worshippers reside in the mosque to dedicate all their time to prayers and Quran reading. Tahajjud are late night prayers in Ramadan. Both are non-obligatory and take place in the last 10 days of the holy month.
Head of the Religious Sector at the ministry told Masrawy that the number of mosques where Itikaf can be assumed is 3,496 spread across the country. Itikaf is exclusive to large mosques only to ensure proper organization by clerics affiliated to the ministry. Mosques on the list have been included after the ministry made sure they are suitable to host worshippers for that period.
The following are the other conditions set by the ministry for Itikaf:
The worshippers must be residents of the same area where the mosque is located.
The number of worshippers must be compatible with the mosque's capacity and its ability to provide services.
The ItiKaf supervisor must register the names of prospective worshippers at least one week ahead.