Druze facts for kids

Kids Encyclopedia Facts
Druze
دروز
Al-Hakim bi-Amr Allah.jpg
Al-Hakim
Sultan Pasha al-Atrash.jpg
Sultan Pasha al-Atrash
Asmahan photo.jpg
Asmahan
Raghida Dergham 2012 Halifax International Security Forum.jpg
Raghida Dergham
Amin Tarif 1950.jpg
Amin Tarif
Samih al-qasim (cropped).jpg
Samih al-Qasim
Amal Nasser el-Din (2).jpg
Amal Nasereldeen
Total population
1,000,000 to 2,500,000
Regions with significant populations
 Syria 700,000
 Lebanon 250,000
 Israel 125,300
 Jordan 20,000
Outside the Middle East 100,000
 United States 20,000
 Canada 10,000
 Venezuela 100,000
 Australia 3,000
 Colombia 3,000
 United Kingdom <1,000
Languages

Arabic
Hebrew (in Israel)
Spanish (in Venezuela and Colombia)

English (in United States and Australia)
Religion
Unitarian Druze

The Druze are an Arabic-speaking people of the Middle East.

There are more than 500,000 Druze. About half of them live in the Hauran districts of Syria. Most of the rest live in Lebanon and about 40,000 live in Israel. Some have emigrated to the United States and Canada.

The Druze practice a religion related to Islam and Christianity but more based on philosophy. Al-Hakim, a ruler of Egypt during the 11th century sponsored the religion which was created by Hamza bin Ali. The name Druze probably comes from Darazi, a preacher who was expelled from the Druze movement, because he preached that Al-Hakim was literally God.

Although sometimes many Druze consider themselves part of Shia Islam, in Israel the are considered part of a different ethnic and religious group within the Arabic-speaking minority, kind of like the "minority within the minority".

The Druze in Lebanon had a major political influence and were the rulers of Lebanon before the 1860s. After the 1860s, they shared the ruling of Mount Lebanon with the Maronites and were later considered the 4th major religious sect after independence. They played a key role in fighting against the Lebanese Christian right during the early 1980s. The Druze ended their fighting against the Lebanese Christian right in late 1990. In 1990 and 1991, they gained representation in Lebanon's government in accordance with a 1989 peace agreement.

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