The Muslim Council of Britain’s secretary general, Harun Khan, criticised the way the Government announced new Covid-19 restrictions, which came the day before Eid celebrations began.
The Government has announced new restrictions to stop the spread of coronavirus across Greater Manchester and parts of east Lancashire and West Yorkshire.
In a statement, he said: “With the first day of Eid being today, for Muslims in the affected areas, it is like being told they cannot visit family and friends for Christmas on Christmas Eve itself.
“Whilst the safety of communities is of paramount importance, as has remained the case from the very outset of this crisis, so is effective communication delivered in a timely fashion.
“Failure to communicate makes it difficult for communities across the country to continue working together to minimise the spread of the virus, whilst eroding trust in the ability of authorities to steer our course as we tackle the Covid-19 crisis.
“The UK Government has failed to provide clarity on the shockingly short notice and the reasoning behind the new rules that British Muslims deserve – any such clarification would be most welcome.”
Muslims celebrating Eid in the affected areas are being urged not to host or visit friends and family in each other’s homes or gardens and not to meet friends and family in other venues – including restaurants or cafes.
People can still attend churches, mosques and other places of worship, but have to socially distance from those outside their household and the Government recommends that “if possible prayer/religious services take place outdoors”.