Like all other brides, Rama couldn’t have her dream wedding as all wedding halls in Syria were closed as part of the government instructions to prevent the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic.
This case applies to all Syrian areas, but in Sweida province in southern Syria, the impact on wedding parties was bigger as the tradition of the people there is to have a three-day wedding with several activities done by the bride and the groom as well as their families. But now, everything has changed as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We had been planning our wedding for several months and we wanted it to be a big wedding attended by all our friends and family members, but now we can’t have the day we envisioned,” said the bride.
Rama and her groom held a small gathering at the house of her father-in-law. Xinhua reporter in Sweida attended the small party but didn’t witness any form of traditional celebration as people maintained social distancing.
Roa Sobeh, another 26-year-old bride, had two choices; either to postpone her wedding for another year or to get married in these circumstances.
She finally settled to have her wedding now than to push it back another year.
“I decided to have my wedding sooner and I think I can make another party when the situation gets better,” the new bride told Xinhua, adding that safety is more important.
Her husband, Khaled, 31, told Xinhua that most weddings in Sweida have been either canceled, postponed, or done on a low scale.
He also pointed out that some of the newly-weds found in the current situation a chance to get married without additional fees as doing the wedding on a lower scale doesn’t cost much.
“Everything is expensive these days, and maybe this is an opportunity for people to get married without worrying about the high cost of weddings nowadays,” he said.
In Sweida, which is largely inhabited by the Druze minority in Syria, the clergymen of the Druze minority also empathized the government’s instructions to maintain social distancing and shut down wedding halls.
Sheikh Hamoud Hinnawi, a revered Druze sheikh, told Xinhua that the people in Sweida have largely abided by the social distancing and minimizing the wedding parties as a result of the COVID-19 infections.
A total of 122 COVID-19 infections have been reported in Syria, including 41 recoveries and four deaths.