The Jami Ul-Alfar Mosque, also known as the Red Mosque, is one of Colombo’s oldest mosques. The Arabs arrived for the first time in Sri Lanka for trade in the 7th century AD. As olden day Ceylon was a hub for trade and was right in the middle of the spice and silk routes; they maintained a constant presence in Sri Lanka since that time by either migrating or intermarrying with the locals. Most Islamic communities settled in Colombo or Galle where the main ports were located; and to this day their descendants continue their lives in these areas. And hence as a result Colombo, with its being a major trade zone of the country, has a very big population of Muslims.