Iraq announces Christmas Day as a public holiday

Iraq announces Christmas Day as a public holiday

by Public Holiday News

Baghdad, Dec 25th 2018

On Christmas Day, the Iraqi Cabinet approved an amendment to its national holiday law to create a new official holiday 'on the occasion of the birth of Jesus Christ'.

In Iraq, where 95 percent of the population are Muslim with around 300,000 Christians, Christmas Day had been designated as a religious break only for the Iraqi Christian community. Under the new amendment, the holiday now extends to everyone.

The follows an appeal made before Christmas by His Beatitude Card Louis Raphael Sako, who hoped to see Iraq follow other Muslim majority nations such as Jordan, Syria and Lebanon who also recognise the birth of Christ with a public holiday.

Since the 2003 invasion, Christians have seen their numbers decline from around 1.5 million to just over 300,000, mostly Chaldeans and Syriac Catholics.

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National holidays in Iraq in 2018

Weekday Date Holiday Comments
Monday New Year's Day
Saturday Army Day Except Kurdistan
Wednesday Eid Norooz Spring Day
Monday Baghdad Liberation Day Kurdistan Region
Tuesday Labour Day International Workers' Day
Friday Eid Al Fitr End of Ramadan
Saturday Eid Al Fitr Holiday
Sunday Eid Al Fitr Holiday
Monday Eid Al Fitr Holiday
Tuesday Eid Al Fitr Holiday
Saturday Republic Day
Wednesday Eid Al-Adha Feast of the Sacrifice
Thursday Eid Al-Adha Holiday
Friday Eid Al-Adha Holiday
Saturday Eid Al-Adha Holiday
Tuesday Islamic New Year Hijri New Year
Thursday Ashura 10 Muharram
Wednesday Independence Day National Day
Tuesday Mawlid al-Nabi Birthday of Prophet Muhammad
Monday Victory Day
Tuesday Christmas

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