Is Mecca time about to replace GMT

First published: 11-08-2010

Watches around the world could soon be set by another reference point instead of Greenwich Mean Time (GMT).

The challenge to the observatory in south-east London comes as a giant clock, costing £500 million, is nearing completion in the holy city of Mecca, the Daily Mail has reported.

Standing atop a skyscraper that will measure almost 2,000 feet, the second tallest building in the world behind the Burj Khalifa in Dubai, the clock faces can be viewed from more than 16 miles away.

This is because of thousands of coloured lights that will be attached to each of the four faces, along with an Arabic encryption, which translates to 'God is greatest'.

Although the clock bears a significant resemblance to Big Ben's tower, the dials are reported to be five times greater in area.

To support the claims that the clock could be the main point for setting the time, scientific arguments were made were made in 2008 by Muslim clerics and scholars that 'Mecca time is the true global meridian'.

Mohammed Al-Arkubi, a manager at a nearby hotel, said: "Putting Mecca time in the face of Greenwich Mean Time - this is the goal."
 

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