Syrian Arab Republic
Syria known as Syrian Arab Republic meaning Ancient Assyrian Empire is Located in the Middle East, between Turkey, Iraq and the Mediterranean Sea.
Most of its land consists of an arid plateau. However the coastal plain in the northwest of the country, running alongside the Mediterranean Sea has large areas of vegetation.
The capital city is Damascus. Agriculture is a considerable portion of the industry in Syria, employing nearly 42% of the labour workforce and accounting for 25% of the GDP.
Wishing to reduce its dependency on oil and agriculture the government has recently been looking to diversify the economy, attracting investment in natural gas, tourism and service sectors.
Syrian culture places a strong importance on family, education, religion and respect.
Much of the arts are traditional in style and dancing is a large component of this, including traditional dances at ceremonies such as weddings and child birth.
The national dance of Syria is the Dabke which is also common across other nations in the region.
It is a line dance which can often be seen at aforementioned ceremonies and other joyous occasions. Syrians have contributed to Arabic literature and music and have a proud tradition of oral and written poetry.
Syrian writers, many of whom immigrated to Egypt, played a crucial role in the nahda or Arab literary and cultural revival of the nineteenth century.
Syrian food mostly consists of Southern Mediterranean, Greek, and Southwest Asian dishes. Some Syrian dishes also evolved from Turkish and French cooking.
Temperatures in the capital Damascus reach lows of 2 °C in the winter months and highs of 38 °C in the summer months.
Almost all of the 8 inches of annual average rainfall occurs in those winter months of November to April. A notable meteorological feature in Syria is the strong unpleasant winds blowing in across Arabia from the southeast.
These winds bring extremely hot and dusty air in from the region and temperature inside these winds can rise as high as 49 °C.
They are most frequent at start and end of the summer season.
Sunni Muslim 74%, other Muslim (includes Alawite, Druze) 16%, Christian (various denominations) 10%, Jewish (tiny communities in Damascus, Al Qamishli, and Aleppo)
Syria first entered the Summer Olympic Games in 1948, participating in 11 of the 15 since then missing the four after its debut and then again in 1976.
The country currently holds three medals in total.
A silver from the men’s freestyle wrestling in 1984, a gold medal for the women’s heptathlon in 1996 and most recently Naser Al Shami a bronze medal for boxing in the 2004 Athens Summer Olympics.
Syria has never competed in the Winter Olympics.
Since the 1978 Bangkok Asian Games, Syria has regularly sent a team who often win medals.