Monday, July 27, 2009

Kurdish People(库尔德人)

We do not know much of Kurdish People, it is because they have no country of their own, but whether they are in Turkey, Iraq,Iran , Syria, Armenia, Azerbaijan or in diaspora, they always have a country in their mind, called Kurdistan, which is literally means "The land of Kurds".

We cannot ignore the Kurdish people, as they are 20% of Turkey population, 17% in Iraq, 7% in Iran, 9% in Syria. There are 1.3 million in Western Europe, 100,000 in USA, 50,000 in Canada and 15,000 in Australia. There are military action in Turkey and Iraq fighting for independence. There are political refugee and economic immigrants around the world.

Kurdish politic has begin to experience a change in the process of democracy in Iraq where the Iraqi Prime Minister said " The election is another step in building a democratic Iraq"(The Star, 27-7-2009). Will the Kurdish people achieved their ambition of nation building?

Kurdistan refers to a territory of 520,000 km², spread over different countries in the Middle East (Iran, Iraq, Turkey and Syria).

Iraqi Kurdistan or Kurdistan Region (Kurdish: Herêmî Kurdistanî, Arabic:إقليم كردستان العراق , Iqlĩm Kurdistãn) also referred to as Southern Kurdistan as part of Greater Kurdistan (Kurdish: باشووری کوردستان, Başûrî Kurdistan) is an autonomous, federally recognized region of Iraq, it borders Iran to the east, Turkey to the north, Syria to the west and the rest of Iraq to the south. An autonomous area of 36,000 sq km. Its capital is the city of Arbil, known in Kurdish as Hewlêr. Iraqi Kurdistan is the only region which has gained official recognition internationally as anautonomous federal entity.

Iranian Kurdistan is the name of the area occupied by Kurds in Iran. It shares borders with Iraq and Turkey and includes the greater parts of West Azerbaijan Province, Kurdistan Province, Kermansham Province, and Ilam Province. It is bordered by Iraq in the south, Syria in the west, Turkey, Azerbaijan, and Armenia in the northwest, and Turkmenistan in the northeast. The total area is approximately 113,655 sq. kilometers. Kurds in Iran are also officially recognized as a minority, although no Iranian territory is designated as ethnically Kurdish

Turkish Kurdistan (Kurdish: Kurdistana Tirkiyê or Bakurê Kurdistanê ) or Northern Kurdistan is an unofficial name for the southeastern part of Turkey, which is inhabited predominantly by ethnic Kurds. The area covers between 190,000 to 230,000 km² (88,780 sq mi), or nearly a third of Turkey.

The incorporation into Turkey of the Kurdish-inhabited regions of eastern Anatolia was opposed by many Kurds, and has resulted in a long-running separatist conflict in which thousands of lives have been lost. The region saw several major Kurdish rebellions including; the Koçkiri Rebellion of 1920, the Sheikh Said Rebellion in 1924, the Republic of Ararat in 1927, and the Dersim Rebellion in 1937. These were forcefully put down by the Turkish authorities and the region was declared a closed military area from which foreigners were banned between 1925 and 1965(source: wikipedia)

Anatolia remained multi-ethnic until the early 20th century. During World War I, the Armenian Genocide, the Greek genocide (especially in Pontus), and the Assyrian Genocide almost entirely eliminated the Armenian and Assyrian populations of Anatolia, as well as a large part of its ethnic Greek population. Following the Greco-Turkish War of 1919-1922, virtually all remaining ethnic Anatolian Greeks were forced out during the 1923 population exchange between Greece and Turkey. Since the foundation of the Republic of Turkey in 1923, most of Anatolia has been part of Turkey, its inhabitants being mainly Turks and Kurds(source: wikipedia)

(The land inhabited by Kurdish people)

Kurdish People
The Kurds (Kurdish: کورد / Kurd) are an Ethnic-Iranian ethnolinguistic group mostly inhabiting a region known as Kurdistan, which includes adjacent parts of Iran, Iraq, Syria, and Turkey. Substantial Kurdish communities also exist in the cities of western Turkey, and they can also be found in Lebanon, Armenia, Azerbaijan and, in recent decades, some European countries and the United States (see Kurdish diaspora). They speak Kurdish, an Indo-European language of the Iranian branch.(source: wikipedia)

The total population of the Kurds is 30 million people. In Iraq, there are 4 million Kurds, who run their own administration. In addition to the Kurds, Assyrians, Armenians and Iraqi Turkoman live in Iraqi Kurdistan(source: UNPO)

History of Kurd
The term Kurd in historical times certainly had a socio-economic rather than ethnic meaning until the 19th century.

This term was used of nomads on the western edge of the Iranian plateau and probably also of the tribes that acknowledged the Sassanians in Mesopotamia, many of which must have been Semitic in origin.

However the contemporary authors who take this term as an "ethnic group" have suggested the Medes, Cyrtians and Carduchi as possible ancestors of the "Kurds". Most Kurds consider themselves among the descendants of Medes.

(Extract from wikipedia)

The Greeks called it Kurdons, the Assyrer called it Kardo, and the Armenians called it Kordoin. The name Kurdistan emerged for the first time in the area between Aserbeidschan, Luristan and the western Zagros with the Seldjuken.

Kurdistan was for centuries the scene of disputes by the big powers. In 1245 the Mongolians conquered the territory and 250 years later the Ottomans followed. After the dissolution of the Ottoman Empire in 1920, the Kurds were promised their own state (Treaty of Sévres, 1920) but in the end the victory powers of World War I changed their minds and only founded two Arab states, Syria and Iraq. As a result, the southern part of Kurdistan was incorporated into Iraq.

1980’s Iraqi President Saddam Hussein began a systematic relocation and genocide against the Kurdish population. This campaign led to the disappearance of over 180,000 Kurds.

1991 After being defeated by the allied forces in the Gulf War, the Iraqi armed forces withdrew from most areas of Iraqi Kurdistan. The UN created a safe-haven in the Kurdistan area in order to protect the Kurdish civilian population. Iraqi Kurdistan became a member of UNPO.

1992 The elections for a parliament were held and a coalition parliament was formed dominated by the two largest party, the PUK and the KDP.

1994 Fighting broke out between the PUK and the KDP. The elected representatives of the Iraqi Kurds, the parliament and the regional government lost their power to the party militias.

1996 Renewed fighting between the two parties led to fleeing of thousands of people towards the Iranian border, in an effort to escape the KDP and the Iraqi military. Plundering of houses, executions and arrests of the PUK members and activists of the Iraqi opposition took place in Kurdistan.Ironically, the Assyrian in the area were also suffered , more than fifty Assyrian villages have been at least partially occupied by Kurdish forces at gunpoint to relocated the Assyrian population and replace them with a Kurdish population(source: UNPO)

Note: PUK and KDP are members of UNPO.

Kurdish civilian people have been suffering for a long time,if you are concern about these people, please pray for them.

To know more about Kurd people, please read the following articles:

1. Kurdish People, by
2. History of the Kurdish People, by
3. The New Kurdistan, Iraq,, Produced by SBS/Dateline,Distributed by Journeyman Pictures
4. For Kurdish people and their land-
5. For Kurdish music-
6. Kurdistan, by
7. Book: A Modern History of Kurds(Revised edition 2004), by David Mcdowall, published by IB Tauris
8.The Kurds in Turkey,
9. Iraqi Kurdistan, Irani Kurdistan, by UNPO,

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