Question: A citizen called Khuwaylid Al-Jada`y Al-Matiry submitted the following question:
On the eve of the thirtieth of Sha‘baan this year, he was in Kuwait when the radio of Kuwait announced their confirmed sighting of the new moon of Ramadaan on Tuesday night which, according to the calendar of Umm Al-Quraa, would fall on the thirtieth of Sha‘baan. Shortly after this he heard on the radio the announcement broadcasted on the radio of Riyadh on the authority of the Higher Judiciary Council that the new moon of Ramadan was not sighted by them on Tuesday night, corresponding to the thirtieth of Sha‘baan, according to the calendar of Umm Al-Quraa. Accordingly, he, as well as the people of the country where he was present during the sighting of the crescent, observed Sawm (Fast). After a couple of days, he came back to Saudi Arabia where Ramadaan had begun one day later and the people had been fasting for two days, whereas he had been fasting for three. This may cause a problem for him at the end of the month if the thirty days of Ramadaan have been completed.
Is he obliged to fast with the people in Saudi Arabia or to stop fasting when Kuwait announces on the thirtieth of Ramadan that sighting the crescent of Shawwaal is confirmed? The questioner thinks that the moon sighting announced on the radio of Riyadh is more correct. He said that he fasted with the people of Kuwait only out of appreciating the sanctity of time. Please clarify this matter!
Answer: If a person is present in a country where people have already started Sawm, he must fast with them. Anyone present in another country under such a situation will come under the same ruling as its own citizens. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said: Sawm (Fasting, i.e. Beginning of Ramadaan) is the day when you fast; Fitr (Breaking the Fast, i.e. End of Ramadaan) is the day when you end the fast, and Al-Ad-haa (the Festival of the Sacrifice) is the day when you sacrifice. (Reported by Aboo Daawood with an authentic Sanad [chain of narrators]; there are supporting reports for it narrated by Aboo Daawood and others)... read more here.