Karbala's week of joy and unity for the Prophet's birthday07/02/2012 14:03
KARBALA, Feb. 7 (AKnews) - The disputed dates of the Prophet Mohammed's birthday has been tackled by one city having a week-long celebration, calling out to unite the nation.
Celebrations kicked off in Karbala last Sunday - the 12th of the Rabei al-Awaal month of the Islamic Calendar - and will continue past the Shiite Waqf council's determined date of Wednesday, Feb. 8 as the Prophet's birthday.
The words 'many happy returns on the Prophet's birthday' are repeated by Karbala citizens to each other on the momentous event, which has became an occasion that they eagerly anticipate.
The Prophet is not only their cause for celebration but joy and pleasure and the call for unity in Iraq.
Citizen Faisal Hassan al-Shummari, who visited his relatives and neighbors to congratulate them on the special anniversary, described the Prophet as founding the principle of defending freedom and dignity.
"The dates of many religious occasions differ between Islamic sects, but we in Iraq reject discrimination and sectarianism, and emphasize the need to unify our position and hold our events together," he explained.
The joy began in the early morning; mosques and shrines as well as newspapers and local radio stations held discussions and broadcasted special programs all week long.
Media commentator Haider al-Khafaji said: "The idea of holding the week of the Prophet is good and appropriate considering the current situation Iraq is passing through.
"This requires citizens to unite and celebrate together the birth anniversary of this great man who gave peace for all humanity."
Cleric Ahmed al-Jabbouri told AKnews: "The manifestations of joy were not only limited to a certain party or sect. Everyone decided to celebrate this noble anniversary and exploit the different Islamic stories about this occasion to extend the days of joy and gladness."
"We need to revive the memory of the Prophet of Islam and embody his principles and teachings to return peace and love to our nation."