CAIRO: On the first day of the Islamic Eid al-Adha (Feast of Sacrifice) holiday, streets across Egypt were filled with people celebrating and a jovial atmosphere prevailed despite security fears of threatened Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis (ABM) attacks.
Muslims around the world celebrate Eid al-Adha, which marks the end of the annual Hajj pilgrimage and the willingness of biblical patriarch Abraham—also venerated in the Quran—to sacrifice his son to God. A traditional animal sacrifice is an integral part of the celebration of the holiday, and the meat is shared with family, friends and the poor.
The Ministry of Interior announced a strict security plan to prevent any potential terrorist attack that could ruin the festive atmosphere of the holiday after a recently released video believed to be from Sinai-based militant group ABM threatened attacks against security targets during the feast.
Consequently, 200,000 security troops were deployed to secure the celebrations and police patrols and bomb squads searched streets and public parks.
After the end of Eid al-Adha prayers, many Egyptians headed to butcher shops, and others ritualistically slaughtered animals—usually sheep, goats and cows—in front of their homes.
Besides launching balloons and fireworks to celebrate the occasion, many people paused to take selfies next to armored vehicles deployed in Tahrir Square for security reasons, Youm7 reported.
It was also reported that during the early hours of the day, hundreds of people headed to the Giza Zoo and public parks throughout Greater Cairo.
Also, for the first time for Eid al-Adha in Egypt, all-female security units were deployed to combat violence against women in anticipation of harassment that often takes place during public gatherings.
Additional reporting by Islam Saeed