US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has refused to host a traditional Ramadan event which has been regularly observed for more than twenty years, according to two U.S officials. Ramadan is a month of fasting to commemorate the first revelation of Muhammad and is a highly important component of the Islamic calendar.
Although a U.S State Department official is reported to have said, ‘We are still exploring possible options for the observance of Eid al-Fitr, which marks the end of the month of Ramadan’, this news will still cause some concern.
Trumps administration has been accused of having an unfair biased against the Muslim community. Former US diplomat Farah Pandith explains that ‘If Tillerson avoids hosting one this year, that could send a message ‘that it is not as important to this administration to engage with Muslims.’
With the White house traditionally hosting Christmas, Easter and a Cedar dinner to commemorate the Jewish passover, there is a precedent in place to do the same for the Ramadan.