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Iraq Customs & Etiquettes
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Owing to a long and varied history, Iraq is a culturally rich country. Today, traditional Islamic culture predominates, with Koranic law playing an active role in the day-to-day life of the country, and visitors should be careful to respect this and act accordingly. Visitors should always address their hosts by full name and title. Traditional Arab hospitality is followed as a rule, in accordance with religious law. Conservative and discreet dress should be worn in observance of local Islamic laws.

In Iraq, the family is the basis of the social structure providing a social network and assistance in times of need. This fundamental social unit regulates an individual’s political, religious and economical activities and determines all rights and obligations. Iraqis observe a mutually protective attitude among relatives and a sense of responsibility towards the extended family. Family loyalty remains at the heart of the Iraqi culture, taking priority over other social relationships.

There is a need for extreme caution when photographing anything of a sensitive nature. This includes photographs of local people (the Muslim religion does not allow the representation of human or animal images in any form); and, most importantly, any government installations, buildings or indeed anything else that may be considered off-limits to visitors. If in any doubt, do not take a photo.

Never show the soles of your feet to others. This is considered very disrespectful by most Iraqis, unless you are in the company of friends. When in the company of friends, it's still best to excuse yourself before putting your feet up in the air with the soles of your feet in the direction of any person.

Don't spit in public or in the direction of others, even when obviously done without malice.

If you are invited to and an Iraqi’s house, you should take flowers or pastries, or a present for the home as a gift for your hosts.

 

 
 


 



 


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