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The rules of Islam come from the Quran and sayings of the Prophet Muhammad (known as “hadith”).

Hospitality is an Arab and Muslim tradition deeply engrained in the culture.

Major differences between the two occur in jurisprudence (i.e.

how to pray, how to marry, inheritance) and minor elements of faith.

Location: Middle East, bordering the Persian Gulf, between Iran and Kuwait Capital: Baghdad Climate: mostly desert; mild to cool winters with dry, hot, cloudless summers; northern mountainous regions along Iranian and Turkish borders experience cold winters with occasionally heavy snows that melt in early spring, sometimes causing extensive flooding in central and southern Iraq Population: 32,585,692 (2014 est.) Ethnic Make-up: Arab 75%-80%, Kurdish 15%-20%, Turkoman, Assyrian, or other 5% Religions: Muslim 97%, Christian or other 3% Government: parliamentary democracy The official language of Iraq is Arabic.

Many other languages are spoken by a variety of ethnic groups, most notably Kurdish.

Iraqis consider family and honour to be of paramount importance.

The extended family or tribe is both a political and social force.

The majority of Iraqis are Muslims regardless of ethnicity.In urban areas, families do not necessarily live in the same house, although they generally live in the same street or suburb at least.The most common greeting is the handshake coupled with eye contact and a smile.Visitors are treated as kings and must always be fed and looked after.A tradition within Islam actually stipulates someone is allowed to stay in your home for 3 days before you can question why they are staying and when they will leave, Invitations to a home must be seen as a great honour and never turned down.

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