A brief look at Syria

Few countries have been in the news as much as Syria recently. As the civil war continues to rage, half of the country's pre-war population has been killed or forced to flee due to the conflict (MercyCorps). Read through BBC News Syria Profile Timeline and check out Mercy Corps Quick Facts regarding the historical and present day crises in Syria.

Most Syrians practice Islam. The Syrian culture is very conservative and a great importance is placed on tradition. Families are typically very close, and loyalty is demonstrated among social, ethnic, and familial groups (The Cultural Atlas).

Traditional greetings among Syrians usually involve a handshake between two men, using their right hands only. It is only appropriate for a man to shake hands with a woman if she extends her right hand first. A strong handshake is not valued in Syrian culture, and gentle pressure is used during the act (The Cultural Atlas).

Check out our page on Syria for more information about the country.