Yemen: Crowds gather to celebrate Eid al-Adha in Taiz despite COVID-19 outbreak

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Large numbers of people gathered in the streets of Taiz on Friday to celebrate one of the most important Islamic holidays, Eid al-Adha, despite the coronavirus outbreak.

​Peope could be seen packing the streets and praying shoulder to shoulder in spite of the pandemic. Official figures indicate that there are more than 1,600 cases of the coronavirus in Yemen, with over 450 subsequent deaths, while experts worry that the true numbers could be significantly higher due to a lack of wide-spread testing in the country, where almost 80 percent of the population – some 24 million people – are in need of assistance and protection, according to recent UN reports.

“The atmosphere of Eid in the governorate of Taiz is one of joy and pleasure, despite the siege, war and many other troubles that the people in the governorate are encountering,” commented one local woman, who had joined the celebrations.

Eid al-Adha is an Islamic holiday celebrated worldwide each year to honour the willingness of Ibrahim (Abraham) to sacrifice his son to God. Just as Ibrahim was about to sacrifice him, God gave him a lamb to sacrifice instead. Eid al-Adha commemorates this intervention with animals often being sacrificed on the holiday to remember the offering.

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