A wealthy businessman in Iraq has had one of the largest Christmas trees in the world set up in Baghdad. Yassir Saad explained that his goal is to show Christians in the country that many Muslims are standing with them in solidarity during one of their most important holidays.
Christians have routinely been targeted by violence in the country and many have been forced to flee since the rise of ISIS.
He explained to the AP that the tree is about “joining our Christian brothers in their holiday celebrations and helping Iraqis forget their anguish, especially the war in Mosul.” He paid $24,000 for the 85-foot-tall tree.
An Iraqi woman visiting the amusement park where the tree is located told the AP, “This tree represents love and peace. I wish all Iraqi Christians could return to Iraq and live normal and peaceful lives.”