Lebanese people

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Lebanese people
Total population
4 million
(Lebanon) [1]
4 [2] [3] [4] –14 million
[5] [6] [7] (Lebanese diaspora)
Map of the Lebanese Diaspora in the World.svg
Regions with significant populations
Flag of Brazil.svg  Brazil 1,000,000 [8] - 6,000,000 - 7,000,000 [9] [10] [11]
Flag of Lebanon.svg  Lebanon 4,130,000 [1]
Flag of Argentina.svg  Argentina 1,500,000 [12]
Flag of Colombia.svg  Colombia 700,000 [13]
Flag of Mexico.svg  Mexico 600,000 [14]
Flag of Venezuela.svg  Venezuela 500,000 [15]
Flag of the United States.svg  United States 440,279 [16]
Flag of Saudi Arabia.svg  Saudi Arabia 300,000 [17]
Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg  Canada 250,000 [18]
Flag of France.svg  France 225,000 [19]
Flag of Australia (converted).svg  Australia 203,139 [20]
Flag of Paraguay.svg  Paraguay 200,000 [14]
Flag of Ecuador.svg  Ecuador 65,000 [14] —97,500 [21]
Flag of the Dominican Republic.svg  Dominican Republic 80,000 [22]
Flag of the United Arab Emirates.svg  United Arab Emirates 80,000 [23]
Flag of Uruguay.svg  Uruguay 70,000 [24]
Flag of Germany.svg  Germany 50,000 [25]
Flag of Kuwait.svg  Kuwait 40,500 [19]
Flag of Sierra Leone.svg  Sierra Leone 33,000-40,000 [26]
Flag of Chile.svg  Chile 32,000 [27] [28]
Flag of Costa Rica.svg  Costa Rica 30,000 [19]
Flag of Senegal.svg  Senegal 30,000 [29]
Flag of Greece.svg  Greece 27,420 [19]
Flag of El Salvador.svg  El Salvador 27,400 [19]
Flag of Cyprus.svg  Cyprus 25,700 [19]
Flag of Guatemala.svg  Guatemala 22,500 [19]
Flag of Cuba.svg  Cuba 20,000 [19]
Flag of Honduras (darker variant).svg  Honduras 20,000 [19]
Flag of South Africa.svg  South Africa 20,000 [30]
Languages
Spoken Vernacular
Lebanese Arabic & Cypriot Maronite Arabic [31]
Diaspora
French, English, Spanish, Portuguese
Religion
Islam (59.5% in Lebanon): 2
(Shia, 3 Sunni, 3 Alawites, Ismailis [32] and Druze) 4 Christianity (40.5% in Lebanon; majority of diaspora): 1
(Maronite, Greek Orthodox, Melkite and Protestant)
Related ethnic groups
Other Semitic-speaking peoples

Notes:
  1. Lebanese Christians of all denominations constitute the majority of all Lebanese worldwide, but represent only a large minority within Lebanon.
  2. Lebanese Muslims of all denominations represent a majority within Lebanon, but add up to only a large minority of all Lebanese worldwide.
  3. Shias and Sunnis account for 54% of Lebanon's population together, even split in half (27%).
  4. In Lebanon, the Druze quasi-Muslim sect is officially categorized as a Muslim denomination by the Lebanese government.

The Lebanese people (Arabic : الشعب اللبناني / ALA-LC: ash-shaʻb al-Lubnānī, Lebanese Arabic pronunciation:  [eʃˈʃæʕeb ellɪbˈneːne] ) are the people inhabiting or originating from Lebanon. The term may also include those who had inhabited Mount Lebanon and the Anti-Lebanon mountains prior to the creation of the modern Lebanese state. The major religious groups among the Lebanese people within Lebanon are Shia Muslims (27%), Sunni Muslims (27%), Maronite Christians (21%), Greek Orthodox Christians (8%), Melkite Christians (5%), Druze (5.6%), Protestant Christians (1%). [33] The largest contingent of Lebanese, however, comprise a diaspora in North America, South America, Europe, Australia and Africa, which is predominantly Maronite Christian.

Contents

As the relative proportion of the various sects is politically sensitive, Lebanon has not collected official census data on ethnic background since 1932 under the French Mandate. It is therefore difficult to have an exact demographic analysis of Lebanese society. [34] The largest concentration of people of Lebanese ancestry may be in Brazil having an estimated population of 5.8 to 7 million, but it may be an exaggeration, given that an official survey conducted by the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics (IBGE) showed that less than 1 million Brazilians claimed any Middle-Eastern origin. [8] The Lebanese have always traveled the world, many of them settling permanently, most notably in the last two centuries.

Estimated to have lost their status as the majority in Lebanon itself, with their reduction in numbers largely as a result of their emigration, Christians still remain one of the principal religious groups in the country. [35] Descendants of Lebanese Christians make up the majority of Lebanese people worldwide, appearing principally in the diaspora. [36]

Identity

Immediately prior to the introduction of Arabic, the people residing in Lebanon—both those who would become Muslim and the vast majority who would remain Christian, along with the tiny Jewish minority—spoke Aramaic, [37] or more precisely, a Western Aramaic language. [31] However, since at least the 15th century, the majority of people of all faiths living in what is now Lebanon have been Arabic-speaking, [38] [39] or more specifically, speakers of Lebanese Arabic, although as late as the 17th century, travellers in Lebanon still reported on several Aramaic-speaking villages [40] where the language was the community's vernacular and not merely liturgical.

Among Lebanese Maronites, Aramaic still remains the liturgical language of the Maronite Church, although in an Eastern Aramaic form (the Syriac language, [41] in which early Christianity was disseminated throughout the Middle East), distinct from the spoken Aramaic of Lebanon, which was a Western Aramaic language. As the second of two liturgical languages of Judaism, Aramaic was also retained as a language in the sphere of religion (in the Talmud) among Lebanese Jews, although here too in an Eastern Aramaic form (the Talmud was composed in Babylonia in Babylonian Aramaic). Among Lebanese Muslims, however, Aramaic was lost twice, once in the shift to Arabic in the vernacular (Lebanese Arabic) and again in the religious sphere, since Arabic (Qur'anic Arabic) is the liturgical language of Islam.[ citation needed ]

Lebanese people, regardless of the region or religion, tend to be predominantly of indigenous Levantine descent rather than peninsula Arab ancestrally. Recent studies show that the majority of the Lebanese people's genetic makeup today is shared with that of ancient Canaanite peoples native to the area. [42]

Some Lebanese Christians, particularly Maronites, identify themselves as Lebanese rather than Arab, seeking to draw "on the Phoenician past to try to forge an identity separate from the prevailing Arab culture". [43] They argue that Arabization merely represented a shift to the Arabic language as the vernacular of the Lebanese people, and that, according to them, no actual shift of ethnic identity, much less ancestral origins, occurred. They have their own histories and lore, and therefore they do not belong to the one pan-Arab ethnicity, and thus such categorisation is erred or inapplicable. Certain portions of Lebanon's Christian population in particular tend to stress aspects of Lebanon's non-Arab prior history to encompass all of Lebanon's historical stages, instead of considering the beginning of Lebanese history being with the Arab conquests. [42]

In light of this "old controversy about identity", [43] some Lebanese prefer to see Lebanon, Lebanese culture and themselves as part of "Mediterranean" and "Levantine" civilization, in a concession to their various layers of heritage.

Population numbers

The total Lebanese population is estimated at 8 to 18 million. Of these, the vast majority, or 4 [2] [3] [4] - 14 [6] million, constitute part of the Lebanese diaspora (residing outside of Lebanon), with approximately 4.7 million citizens residing in Lebanon itself. [33]

Lebanon

[nb 1] [1] [1] [44]
Ethnic Groups in Lebanon
EthnicityPercent
Lebanese
95%
Armenians
4%
Various other ethnicities:
Mideast (Kurds, Turks, Assyrians, Iranians),
Europeans (Greeks, Italians, French) and others
1%

There are approximately 4.7 million Lebanese citizens in Lebanon. [33]

In addition to this figure, there are an additional 1 million foreign workers (mainly Syrians), and about 470,000 Palestinian refugees in the nation. [45] [46]

Lebanon is also a home to various ethnic minorities found refuge in the country over the centuries. Prominent ethnic minorities in the country include the Armenians, the Kurds, the Turks, the Assyrians, the Iranians and some European ethnicities (Greeks, Italians, French).

There are also a small number of nomadic Dom Gypsies (part of the Roma people of South Asian, particularly, Indian descent)

Diaspora

Salma Hayek Salma Hayek 2004.jpg
Salma Hayek
Carlos Ghosn Carlos Ghosn - India Economic Summit 2009.jpg
Carlos Ghosn
Amal Clooney Amal Alamuddin Cannes 2016.jpg
Amal Clooney

The Lebanese diaspora consists of approximately 4 [2] [3] [4] - 14 [6] million, both Lebanese-born living abroad and those born-abroad of Lebanese descent. The majority of the Lebanese in the diaspora are Christians, [47] disproportionately so in the Americas where the vast majority reside. An estimate figure show that they represent about 75% of the Lebanese in total. Lebanese abroad are considered "rich, educated and influential" [48] and over the course of time immigration has yielded Lebanese "commercial networks" throughout the world. [49]

The largest number of Lebanese is to be found in Brazil, [50] where according to the Brazilian and Lebanese governments claim, there are 7 million Brazilians of Lebanese descent. [9] [10] [11] These figures, however, may be an exaggeration given that, according to a 2008 survey conducted by IBGE, in 2008, covering only the states of Amazonas, Paraíba, São Paulo, Rio Grande do Sul, Mato Grosso and Distrito Federal, 0.9% of white Brazilian respondents said they had family origins in the Middle East [8]

Large numbers also reside elsewhere in North America, most notably in the United States (489,702) [51] and in Canada, the people of full or partial Lebanese descent are between 190,275 (by ancestry, 2011 Census) [52] to 250,000 based on estimates. [18] In the rest of the Americas, significant communities are found in Argentina, [12] Mexico (400,000); [53] Chile, [54] Colombia [55] and Venezuela, with almost every other Latin American country having at least a small presence.

In Africa, Ghana and the Ivory Coast are home to over 100,000 Lebanese. [56] There are significant Lebanese populations in other countries throughout Western and Central Africa. [57] [58] Australia hosts over 180,000 and Canada 250,000. In the Arab world, the Arab states of the Persian Gulf harbour around 400,000 Lebanese. [59] Lebanese people also can be found in all of the 28 member states of the European Union. More than 2,500 ex-SLA members remain in Israel. [60]

Currently, Lebanon provides no automatic right to Lebanese citizenship for emigrants who lost their citizenship upon acquiring the citizenship of their host country, nor for the descendants of emigrants born abroad. This situation disproportionately affects Christians. Recently, the Maronite Institution of Emigrants called for the establishment of an avenue by which emigrants who lost their citizenship may regain it, or their overseas-born descendants (if they so wish) may acquire it. [61]

The list below contains approximate figures for people of Lebanese descent by country of residence, largely taken from the iLoubnan diaspora map. [19] Additional reliable cites have been provided where possible. Additional estimates have been included where they can be cited; where applicable, these are used in place of the iLoubnan figures. The Figure below uses the data from the list and calculates the amount of Lebanese residents as a percentage of the total population of the respective country.

CountryEstimateUpper EstimateRegionCountry article in English WikipediaList of personalities of Lebanese origin
Flag of Brazil.svg  Brazil 2,000,000 according to a research conducted by IBGE in 2008, covering only the states of Amazonas, Paraíba, São Paulo, Rio Grande do Sul, Mato Grosso and Distrito Federal, 0.9% of white Brazilian respondents said they had family origins in the Middle East [8] 5,800,000 [19] -7,000,000 [62] (Brazilian/Lebanese governments) [63] Latin America Lebanese Brazilian Brazil
Flag of Argentina.svg  Argentina 1,200,000 [19] [12] 3,500,000 [12] Latin America Lebanese Argentine Argentina
Flag of Colombia.svg  Colombia 800,000 [19] 3,200,000 [64] Latin America Lebanese Colombian Colombia
Flag of the United States.svg  United States 500,000 [65] [note 1] 506,150 [66] [note 2] North America Lebanese American United States
Flag of Venezuela.svg  Venezuela 341,000 [19] 500,000 [67] Latin America Lebanese Venezuelan Venezuela
Flag of Australia (converted).svg  Australia 271,000 [68] [69] 350,000 [70] Oceania Lebanese Australian Australia
Flag of Mexico.svg  Mexico 240,000 [19] 400,000 [71] - 505,000[ citation needed ]Latin America Lebanese Mexican Mexico
Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg  Canada 190,275 [72] 250,000 [73] - 270,000 [19] North America Lebanese Canadian Canada
Flag of Saudi Arabia.svg  Saudi Arabia 120,000 [19] 269,000 [74] Arab World Lebanese people in Saudi Arabia Saudi Arabia
Flag of Syria.svg  Syria 114,000[ citation needed ]Arab World Lebanese people in Syria Syria
Flag of France.svg  France 100,000 [75] [76] 225,000 [19] - 250,000 [77] European Union Lebanese French France
Flag of Ecuador.svg  Ecuador 98,000 [19] 250,000Latin America Lebanese Ecuadorian Ecuador
Flag of the Dominican Republic.svg  Dominican Republic 80,000 [78] Latin America Lebanese Dominican
Flag of the United Arab Emirates.svg  United Arab Emirates 80,000 [79] 156,000[ citation needed ]Arab World Lebanese people in the United Arab Emirates United Arab Emirates
Flag of Uruguay.svg  Uruguay 53,000 [19] 70,000 [80] Latin America Lebanese Uruguayan Uruguay
Flag of Germany.svg  Germany 50,000 [81] European Union Lebanese German Germany
Flag of Cote d'Ivoire.svg  Ivory Coast 50,000 [82] 90,000 [83] Sub-saharan Africa Lebanese people in Ivory Coast
Flag of Kuwait.svg  Kuwait 41,775 [84] 106,000 [85] Arab World Lebanese people in Kuwait
Flag of Senegal.svg  Senegal 30,000 [86] [87] Sub-Saharan Africa Lebanese Senegalese
Flag of Sweden.svg  Sweden 26,906 [88] European Union Lebanese people in Sweden Sweden
Flag of Denmark.svg  Denmark 26,705 [89] European Union Lebanese people in Denmark Denmark
Flag of Qatar.svg  Qatar 25,000 [90] 191,000[ citation needed ]Arab World Lebanese people in Qatar
Flag of Spain.svg  Spain 11,820 [19] European Union Lebanese Spanish Spain
Flag of New Zealand.svg  New Zealand 8,500 [19] Oceania Lebanese New Zealander
Flag of South Africa.svg  South Africa 5,100[ citation needed ]20,000 [30] Sub-Saharan Africa Lebanese people in South Africa South Africa
Flag of Belgium (civil).svg  Belgium 2,4005,000 European Union Lebanese people in Belgium Belgium
Caribbean [note 3] 545,200 [19] Latin America Lebanese Jamaican align=
Rest of Latin America, ex. Caribbean [note 4] 181,800 [19] Latin America Lebanese Chileans align=
Scandinavia 108,220 [19] European Union Lebanese Swedish Sweden  · Denmark
Rest of GCC [note 5] 105,000 [19] Arab World
Rest of European Union [note 6] 96,780 [19] European Union align=align=
Rest of Sub-Saharan Africa [note 7] 42,510 [19] Sub-Saharan Africa Lebanese Sierra Leonean Ghana  · Sierra Leone
North Africa [note 8] 14,000 [19] North Africa Lebanese Egyptian Egypt
Asia [note 9] 2,600 [19] Asia
Lebanese residents as a percentage of country's total population Lebanese residents as a percentage of country's total population.png
Lebanese residents as a percentage of country's total population

Note: An important percentage of Arabs in Argentina, Chile, Brazil, Colombia, Mexico, Venezuela, Bulgaria, Romania, Italy, Portugal and Spain are of Lebanese ancestry. They are denoted ** for this purpose.

Religion

Lebanese Muslims [33] [91] [92] [93] [94] [95] [96]
YearPercent
1932
49%
1985
75%
2010
61%
2014
59.5%
Lebanese Christians [91] [92] [93] [94] [95]
YearPercent
1932
51%
1985
25%
2010
39%
2014
40.5%

Lebanon has several different main religions. The country has the most religiously diverse society in the Middle East, encompassing 17 recognized religious sects. [97] The main two religions among the Lebanese people are Christianity (the Maronite Church, the Greek Orthodox Church, the Melkite, the Protestant Church) and Islam (Shia and Sunni). The third-largest religion is Druze.

There are other non-Lebanese Christian minorities such as Armenians (Armenian Apostolic Church and Armenian Catholic Church), French-Italians (Latin Catholic Church), Assyrians (Assyrian Church of the East, Syriac Catholic Church, Syriac Orthodox Church, Chaldean Catholic Church) and Copts (Coptic Orthodox Church of Alexandria), who immigrated to Lebanon over the years. [98]

No official census has been taken since 1932, reflecting the political sensitivity in Lebanon over confessional (i.e. religious) balance. [99]

A study conducted by Statistics Lebanon, a Beirut-based research firm, cited by the United States Department of State found that of Lebanon's population of approximately 4.3 million is estimated to be: [33]

There are also very small numbers of other religions such as Judaism, Mormons, Baháʼí Faith, and also religions practiced by foreigner workers like Buddhism and Hinduism. [33]

The CIA World Factbook specifies that of those residing in Lebanon, 59.7% are Muslims (Shia, Sunni, Druze, Sufi and Alawites) and 39% are Christians (mostly Maronites, Greek Orthodox, Melkite, Armenian Apostolic Church, Armenian Catholic Church, Assyrian Church of the East, Syriac Orthodox, Chaldean Catholic, Syriac Catholics) and 1.3% "Other". [1]

The International Foundation for Electoral Systems provides source for the registered voters in Lebanon for 2011 [100] (it has to be noted that voter registration does not include people under 18 and unregistered voters) that puts the numbers as following: Sunni Islam 27.65%, Shia Islam 27.34%, Maronite Catholic 21.05%, Greek Orthodox 7.34%, Druze 5.74%, Melkite Catholic 4.76%, Armenian Apostolic 2.64%, other Christian Minorities 1.28%, Alawite Shia Islam 0.88%, Armenian Catholic 0.62%, Evangelical Protestant 0.53%, and other 0.18% of the population.

With the diaspora included, the Christians are an absolute majority. Lebanon has a population of Mhallamis also known as Mardinli), most of whom migrated from northeast Syria and southeast Turkey are estimated to be between 75,000 and 100,000 and considered to be part of the Sunni population. These have in recent years been granted Lebanese citizenship and, coupled with several civil wars between Islamic extremists and the Lebanese military that have caused many Christians to flee the country, have re-tipped the demographic balance in favour of the Muslims and the Sunnis in particular. [101] In addition, many thousands of Arab Bedouins in the Bekaa and in the Wadi Khaled region, who are entirely Sunnis, were granted Lebanese citizenship. Lebanon also has a Jewish population, estimated at less than 100.

Though Lebanon is a secular country, family matters such as marriage, divorce and inheritance are still handled by the religious authorities representing a person's faith. Calls for civil marriage are unanimously rejected by the religious authorities but civil marriages held in another country are recognized by Lebanese civil authorities.

Legally registered Muslims form around 54% of the population (Shia, Sunni, Alawite). Legally registered Christians form up to 41% (Maronite, Greek Orthodox Christian, Melkite, Armenian, Evangelical, other). Druze form around 5%. A small minority of 0.1% includes Jews, and foreign workers who belong to Hindu and Buddhist religions.

Non-religion is not recognized by the state, however in 2009, the Minister of the Interior Ziad Baroud made it possible to have the religious sect removed from the Lebanese identity card, this does not, however, deny the religious authorities complete control over civil family issues inside the country. [102] [103]

Genetics

A Druze family of the Lebanon, late 1800s Tristram Ellis 002.jpg
A Druze family of the Lebanon, late 1800s

Y-DNA haplogroups

Theories from some studies propose to corroborate that the Lebanese trace genetic continuity with earlier inhabitants, regardless of their membership to any of Lebanon's different religious communities today. In a 2007 study, geneticist Pierre Zalloua found that "the genetic marker which identifies descendants of the ancient Levantines is found among members of all of Lebanon's religious communities" [104] In a 2013 interview Pierre Zalloua, pointed out that genetic variation preceded religious variation and divisions: "Lebanon already had well-differentiated communities with their own genetic peculiarities, but not significant differences, and religions came as layers of paint on top." [105]

By identifying the ancient type of DNA attributed to the Phoenicians, geneticist Pierre Zalloua was also able to chart their spread out of the eastern Mediterranean. These markers were found in unusually high proportions in non-Lebanese samples from other parts of the "Mediterranean coast where the Phoenicians are known to have established colonies, such as Carthage in today's Tunisia." [43] The markers were also found among samples of Maltese and Spaniards, where the Phoenicians were also known to have established colonies. The study shows that 1 out of 17 people in the countries surrounding the Mediterranean basin can be identified with the Levantine genetic markers in their male chromosomes. However, the particular marker associated by some studies with the historical Phoenicians, haplogroup J2, actually represents a complex mosaic of different demographic processes which affected the Mediterranean in prehistoric and historic times. [106]

In a 2011 genetic study by Haber et al which analyzed the male-line Y-chromosome genetics of the different religious groups of Lebanon, revealed no large genetic differentiation between the Maronites, Greek Orthodox Christians, Greek Catholic Christians, Sunni Muslims, Shiite Muslims, and Druze of the country in regards to the more frequent haplogroups. Major differences between Lebanese groups were found among the less frequent haplogroups. [107] In 1965, Ruffié and Taleb found significant differences of blood markers between ethno-religious groups. [108]

Autosomal DNA

According to a 2017 study published by the American Journal of Human Genetics, present-day Lebanese derive most of their ancestry from a Canaanite-related population (Canaanite being a pre-Phoenician name), which therefore implies substantial genetic continuity in the Levant since at least the Bronze Age. [109] [110] More specifically, according to geneticist Chris Tyler-Smith and his team at the Sanger Institute in Britain, who compared "sampled ancient DNA from five Canaanite people who lived 3,750 and 3,650 years ago" to modern people, revealed that 93 percent of the genetic ancestry of people in Lebanon came from the Canaanites (the other 7 percent was of a Eurasian steppe population). [111] [112]

A 2019 study, carried out by the Wellcome Sanger Institute, United Kingdom, after analyzing the "DNA evidence from the remains of nine Crusaders found at a burial site in Lebanon", concludes that, contrarily to some idea, the Crusaders didn't leave "a lasting effect on the genetics of modern-day Lebanese. Instead, today’s Lebanese Christians in particular are more genetically similar to locals from the Roman period, which preceded the Crusades by more than four centuries." [113] [114]

In a 2020 study published in the American Journal of Human Genetics, researchers have shown that there is substantial genetic continuity in Lebanon since the Bronze Age interrupted by three significant admixture events during the Iron Age, Hellenistic, and Ottoman period, each contributing 3%–11% of non-local ancestry to the admixed population. [115]

Relationship with other populations

Other studies have sought to establish relationships between the Lebanese people and other groups. A 2013 genetic study carried out by Haber at al found "all Jews (Sephardi and Ashkenazi) cluster in one branch; Druze from Mount Lebanon and Druze from Mount Carmel are depicted on a private branch; and Lebanese Christians form a private branch with the Christian populations of Armenia and Cyprus placing the Lebanese Muslims as an outer group. Lebanese Muslims cluster towards the predominant Muslim populations of Syrians, Palestinians, and Jordanians, which in turn cluster on branches with other Muslim populations as distant as Morocco and Yemen." [116]

Christian men from Mount Lebanon, late 1800s Lebanesefighta.JPG
Christian men from Mount Lebanon, late 1800s

At least one study by the International Institute of Anthropology in Paris, France, confirmed similarities in the Y-haplotype frequencies in Lebanese, Palestinian, and Sephardic Jewish men, identifying them as "three Near-Eastern populations sharing a common geographic origin." [117] The study surveyed one Y-specific DNA polymorphism (p49/Taq I) in 54 Lebanese and 69 Palestinian males, and compared with the results found in 693 Jews from three distinct Jewish ethnic groups; Mizrahi Jews, Sephardi Jews, and Ashkenazi Jews. Lebanese cluster the closest to Jews of any Arab population except the Druze according to a 2010 study by Behar et al., possibly corroborating the Canaanite origin of both. [118]

Notable individuals

See also

Notes

  1. 26% of 1.9m Americans of Arab descent
  2. 26% of 3,665,789 Americans of Arab descent
  3. Includes Cuba, Guadalupe & Haiti
  4. Belize, Bolivia, Chile, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru
  5. Excludes Saudi Arabia & Kuwait, includes Iraq & Jordan
  6. Belgium, Cyprus, Greece, Italy, Monaco, Switzerland, United Kingdom
  7. Burkina Faso, Gambia, Ghana, Liberia, Nigeria & Sierra Leone
  8. Egypt, Libya & rest of North Africa
  9. Iran & Philippines

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Religion in Lebanon Cultural, historical and legal aspects of religions in Lebanon

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Lebanese Druze are Druze people with Lebanese citizenship. The Druze faith is a monotheistic and Abrahamic religion, and an ethnoreligious esoteric group originating from the Near East who self identify as unitarians.

Lebanese Sunni Muslims

Lebanese Sunni Muslims refers to Lebanese people who are adherents of the Sunni branch of Islam in Lebanon, which is one of the largest denomination in Lebanon tied with Shias. Sunni Islam in Lebanon has a history of more than a millennium. According to a CIA 2018 study, Lebanese Sunni Muslims constitute an estimated 30.6% of Lebanon's population.

Lebanese Maronite Christians Religious group in Lebanon associated with the Catholic Church

Lebanese Maronite Christians are adherents of the Maronite Church in Lebanon, which is the largest Christian denomination in the country. The Maronite Church is an Eastern Catholic Church in full communion with the worldwide Catholic Church.

Catholic Church in the Middle East

The Catholic Church in the Middle East is under the spiritual leadership of the Pope in Rome. The Catholic Church is said to have traditionally originated in the Middle East in the 1st century AD, and was one of the major religions of the region from the 4th-century Byzantine reforms until the centuries following the Arab Islamic conquests of the 7th century AD. Ever since, its proportion has decreased until today's diaspora tendency, mainly due to persecution by Islamic majority societies. In most Islamic countries, the Catholic Church is severely restricted or outlawed. Significant exceptions include Israel and Lebanon.

Christianity and Druze Relationship between Christianity and Druze

Christianity and Druze are Abrahamic religions that share a historical traditional connection with some major theological differences. The two faiths share a common place of origin in the Middle East, and are monotheistic.

Maronite Church Eastern Catholic sui iuris particular church of the Catholic Church headquartered in Lebanon

The Maronite Church is an Eastern Catholic sui iuris particular church in full communion with the pope and the worldwide Catholic Church, with self-governance under the Code of Canons of the Eastern Churches. Its chief pastor is Patriarch Bechara Boutros al-Rahi since 2011, seated in Bkerke, northeast of Beirut, Lebanon. Officially known as the Syriac Maronite Church of Antioch, it is part of Syriac Christianity by liturgy and heritage.

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Footnotes

  1. Many Christian Lebanese do not identify themselves as Arab but rather as descendants of the ancient Canaanites and prefer to be called "Phoenicians"