Translation of the Decree from the Muslim World League

In the Name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful.
"Hold on altogether to the rope that Allah extends to you and do not disperse."

The Muslim World League
Secretariat General
Makkah Al-Mukarramah
Administration of the Fiqh Council
Ninth Session
1406 AH

The Eighth Decree
Regarding Times for Prayers and Fasting at Extreme Latitudes

All praise is due to Allah alone, and may mercy and peace be upon he whom no prophet will postdate, our master and prophet, Muhammad, may the mercy and peace of Allah be upon him, his family, and companions.

In its ninth session, the Fiqh Council deliberated in the Muslim World League building in Makkah Al-Mukarramah between the dates of Saturday, 12 Rajab 1406 AH and Saturday, 19 Rajab 1406 AH regarding times for prayers and fasting at extreme latitudes.

In conformance with the lenient spirit of Islamic Law and the findings provided by the Council of Astronomers, the [Fiqh] Council decrees the following:

  1. In order to avoid the confusion caused by multiple computational methods, each prayer time is described in two ways: the astronomical phenomenon specified in Islamic Law and the corresponding astronomical calculation. The latter is expressed in terms of the position of the sun above or below the horizon. Islamic scholars of prayer times determined the following:
    1. Fajr corresponds to the first appearance of a white light that spreads laterally across the horizon. This is referred to as true dawn and corresponds to when the sun is 18 degrees below the eastern horizon.
    2. Sunrise corresponds to the appearance of the highest point of the sun's disk on the eastern horizon, which corresponds to when the sun is 5/6 of a degree below the horizon.
    3. Dhuhr corresponds to the sun passing its zenith - the highest point it will reach that day. This corresponds to the shortest shadow of an object [for that day].
    4. Asr corresponds to the position of the sun such that the length of the shadow of an object is equal to the length of the object plus the length of the object's shadow when the sun is at its zenith. The corresponding angle changes with respect to time and place.
    5. Maghrib corresponds to the complete disappearance of the sun's disk below the western horizon. This corresponds to the sun being 5/6 of a degree below the horizon.
    6. Isha corresponds to the disappearance of red twilight. This corresponds to the sun being 17 degrees below the western horizon.
  2. It is sufficient to add two [clock] minutes to the times of: Dhuhr, Asr, Maghrib, and Isha, and to subtract two minutes from the times of Fajr and sunrise.
  3. Extreme latitudes fall into three categories:
    1. Region 1 is anywhere between latitudes of 45 to 48 degrees north or south. Whether drawn-out or shortened, all necessary astronomical phenomena occur within a 24 hour period in this region.
    2. Region 2 is anywhere between latitudes of 48 to 66 degrees north or south. Some astronomical phenomena are non-existent during some days of the year in this region, such as the lingering of twilight through the start of Isha and the adjacency of the end of Maghrib time with the start of Fajr.
    3. Region 3 is anywhere between the latitude of 66 north or south and the corresponding pole. The necessary astronomical phenomena are non-existent for large parts of the year.
  4. The ruling regarding Region 1 is that its inhabitants must abide by the legally prescribed times for prayers and fast between the appearance of true dawn and sunset. This is in accordance with Islamic legal texts regarding prayer and fasting.
  5. The ruling regarding Region 2 is that the times for Isha and Fajr should be determined by using the corresponding percentages for these prayers at the latitude of 45 degrees. For example, if Isha starts after one third of the night has passed at the latitude of 45 degrees, then relative to the length of the night at the desired location, Isha also starts after one third of it has passed. The same applies to Fajr.
  6. The ruling regarding Region 3 is that the times for all prayers should be computed according to their analogues at a latitude of 45 degrees. The 24 hours in a day in this region should be divided up into the same proportions as it is at 45 degrees. For example, if the length of the night at 45 degrees is eight hours, the sun sets at 8:00 pm, and Isha is at 11:00 pm, then the equivalent should hold for the desired location. If, for example, Fajr is at 2:00 am, then it is the same at the desired location. Fasting should start from this time until the proportioned Maghrib.

  7. This conclusion is based on the analogous situation mentioned in the hadeeth pertaining to the Dajjal (False Christ),
    We said, "Oh Messenger of Allah, how long will he remain on earth?" He said, "Forty days: a day like a year, then a day like a month, then a day like a week..." We said, "Oh Messenger of Allah, in the day that is like a year, will the prayer of a day be sufficient?" He said, "No, proportion out the time."
    (It was narrated by Abu Dawood in the chapter on massacres.)
    Allah is the Possessor of correctness.
May mercy and peace be upon our master Muhammad and all of his family and companions.

Dr. Abdullah Umar Naseef
Vice President

Abdulaziz ibn Abdullah ibn Baz
President of the Fiqh Council

Dr. Talal Umar Bafaqeeh
Reporter of the Islamic Fiqh Council


  • Muhammad ibn Jubayr
  • Abdullah Aal Abdurrahman Al-Bassam
  • Salih ibn Foozan ibn Abdullah Al-Foozan
  • Muhammad ibn Abdullah ibn Subayyil
  • Mustafa Ahmad Al-Zarqa'

  • [Handwritten note:] I opine that the extremes of day and night for different seasons in Hejaz or the entire Arabian Peninsula form a basis for measurement of prayer times at extreme latitudes.
  • Muhammad Mahmood Al-Sawwaf
  • Salih ibn Uthaymayn
  • Muhammad Rasheed Kabbani
  • Muhammad Al-Shathili Al-Nayfir
  • Abu Bakr Joomy
  • Dr. Ahmad Fahmy Abu Sinnah
  • Muhammad Al-Habeeb ibn Al-Khojah
  • Dr. Bakr Abu Zayd
  • Yusuf Al-Qaradhawi
  • Muhammad Salim ibn Abdulwadood
  • Abu Al-Hasan Ali Al-Hasani Al-Nadawi
From the Council of Astronomers:
  • Prof. Dr. Mohammad Hawari
The following were absent from this session: his excellency Sheikh Abdulquddoos Al-Hashimi, his highness Marshal Mahmood Sheet Khattab, his excellency Sheikh Hasanayn Muhammad Makhloof, and his excellency Sheikh Mabrook Masood Al-Awadi.

Latest update: February 16, 2010