Jordanians light Mideast's tallest Christmas tree

AP News
Posted: Dec 17, 2009 4:09 PM

Jordanians are celebrating something different this holiday season _ the lighting of what is said to be the tallest Christmas tree in the Middle East.

Members of Jordan's royal family on Thursday lit the 85-foot-tall (26-meter-tall) artificial pine tree adorned with red and gold ornaments in the predominantly Christian city of Fuhais in western Jordan.

Singing groups followed nearby, and a life-size nativity scene was mounted.

Mayor Geryes Sweis said the tree was the tallest in the region.

Hundreds of Jordanians, including Muslim women in head scarves, gathered under the tree to sing Christmas carols. They watched teenagers in Santa Claus costumes dancing.

Christians make up 4 percent of Jordan's 6 million people.