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Coronavirus changes Iraq’s traditions of physical touch

The imposition of social distancing in Iraq to avoid the spread of the coronavirus has affected Iraqi cultural habits such as shaking hands and kissing.
A man sits inside empty Imam Abbas shrine, as Friday prayers were suspended following the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in the holy city of Kerbala , Iraq, March 20, 2020. REUTERS/Abdullah Dhiaa al-Deen - RC2LNF9OG4S6

The spread of the coronavirus in Iraq has modified Iraqi customs and traditions that show personal affection through physical touch. This is in addition to the banning of social gatherings of Iraqis in celebration of joyful events or even for condolences.

Greetings between Iraqis involve three kisses on each cheek as an expression of affection or longing, but this practice is no longer acceptable with the pandemic.

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