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FORESTS
MOUNTAINS
kurdistans RIVERS
SHINGAL 3/8 2014
SHEIKH MAHMUD BARZANJI
 ANFAL
REPUBLIC OF MAHABAD
RED KURDISTAN
DEMOGRAPHICS
BELIEVERS
 ANFAL

ANFAL

 ANFAL

Halabja is a town located in Iraqi-Kurdistan. It had about as many inhabitants as Lund.
Wednesday, 16 / 3-1988 attacked Iraq, the peaceful town at 16 different
occasions. In each attack took 6-8 planes bombed the town with dangerous,
poison gas bombs. more

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Forests

Kurdistan is a mountainous region with a cold climate receiving annual precipitation adequate to sustain temperate forests and shrubs. Mountain chains harbor pastures and forested valleys, totaling more

Mountains

Mountains are important geographical and symbolic features of Kurdish life, as evidenced by the saying ”Kurds have no friends but the mountains”. more

Lakes

Kurdistan extends to Lake Urmia in Iran on the east. The region includes Lake Van, the largest body of water in Turkey; the only lake in the Middle East with a larger surface is Lake Urmia – though not nearly as deep as Lake Van, which has a much more

                             Rivers

The plateaus and mountains of Kurdistan, which are characterized by heavy rain and snow fall, act as a water reservoir for the Near and Middle East, forming the source of the Tigris and Euphrates rivers, as well as other numerous smaller rivers, such as the Khabur, Tharthar, Ceyhan, Araxes, Kura, Sefidrud, Karkha, and Hezil. Among rivers of historical importance to more

 

                       Shingal 3/8 2014

On 3th August , 2014 exposed thousands of YezidiKurds in the city Shingal in southern Kurdistan genocide. People fled barefoot into Shingalmountain to escape from ISIS more

Modern period

According to Sharafkhan Bitlisi in his Sharafnama, the boundaries of the Kurdish land begin at the sea of Hurmuz (Persian Gulf) and stretch on an even line to the end of Malatya and Marash. Evliya Çelebi who traveled in Kurdistan between 1640 and 1655, mentioned different districts of Kurdistan including Erzurum, Van, Hakkari, Cizre, Imaddiya, Mosul, Shahrizor, Harir, Ardalan, Baghdad, Derne, Derteng, until Basra. more

Sheikh Mahmud Barzanji

When the Ottoman Empire collapsed established Sheikh Mahmud Barzanji with the Kurds in northern Iraq, a semiindependent state. This was formed into an emirate which lasted from September 1922 to July 1924.
Mahmud Barzanji, born in 1878, died October 9, 1956 was the leader of more

 Anfal

Halabja is a town located in Iraqi-Kurdistan. It had about as many inhabitants as Lund.
Wednesday, 16 / 3-1988 attacked Iraq, the peaceful town at 16 different
occasions. In each attack took 6-8 planes bombed the town with dangerous,
poison gas bombs. more

Republic of Mahabad

Republic of Mahabad was a Kurdish state in north-western Iran, 1946-1947, named after the town of Mahabad. Mahabad counted the second independent Kurdish state in the 1900s, after the Ararat Republic.Republic of Mahabad established with Soviet support fell rapidly after the Soviet withdrawal of its troops. more

Ararat Republic

Ararat Republic was a self-proclaimed Kurdish state in 1927 which was put down in 1930 located in today’s northern Kurdistan in eastern Turkey around Mount Ararat bordering the eastern Kurdistan in Iran and Armenia. At the head of the Ararat Republic was General Ihsan Nuri Pasha’s origins come from the more

 

Red Kurdistan

Red Kurdistan was an autonomy under the Soviet Union established by Lenin which existed for 6 years between 1923-1929 .. Red Kurdistan’s capital was Lachin current Azerbaijan but occupied by Armenian separatists.

Red Kurdistan that was officially established 7 July , 1923 pursuant to a decision of a Soviet special committee, but dissolved April 8, 1929 established the non-Kurdish land that it currently does not consider to belong to Kurdistan. more

Music

Traditionally, there are three types of Kurdish Classical performers – storytellers (çîrokbêj), minstrels (stranbêj) and bards (dengbêj). There was no specific music related to the Kurdish princely courts, and instead, music performed in night gatherings (şevbihêrk) is considered classical. more

Newroz

In the Kurdish tradition is the celebration also a commemoration of a legendary overthrow of a tyrannical king for more than 2,500 years ago. Newroz celebrations are also a way to manifest Kurdish identity. To celebrate Newroz was banned in Turkey until 1995. 2010 was reintroduced prohibition to celebrate Newroz on days other than March 21. Today is the feast politically charged, and it usually annually conflicts between Kurds and the Turkish government. more

Symbolism of the Kurdish flag

The symbolism of the colors is:

Red: symbolizes Kurdish blood of martyrs and the
continued pursuit of Kurdish freedom and dignity.
White: words of peace and justice more

Climate

The climate of the Kurdistan Region is semi-arid continental: very hot and dry in summer, and cold and wet in winter.

Spring is the most beautiful season in Kurdistan and the time when Kurds celebrate Newroz, the Kurdish New Year, on the spring or vernal equinox. Mean high temperatures range from 13-18 degrees in March to 27-32 degrees in May. more

Demographics

The number of ethnic Kurds living in the nation over the bordering region is estimated at about 37.24 million with distribution:

Turkey: ca 19-25 million (25%)

Turkey: ca 7-million (10%)

Iraq:ca 6-8million (20%)more

Believers

As a whole, the Kurdish people are adherents to a large number of different religions and creeds, perhaps constituting the most religiously diverse people of West Asia. Traditionally, Kurds have been known to take great liberties with their practices. This sentiment is reflected in the saying “Compared to the unbeliever, the Kurd is a Muslim”. more

Prehistory

Indo-European tribes settled in the Zagros mountains during the millennium before Christ. People Act kardaker, gutier, kyrtyer and Medes are known since about 2000 BC. Kr. 500 BC. more

Early history

Kurdish is a language of the Northwestern Iranian group which has likely separated from the other dialects of Central Iran during the early centuries AD (the Middle Iranian period). Kurdish has in turn emerged as a group within Northwest Iranian during the medieval period (roughly 10th to 16th centuries). more

Language

The two main dialects is Sorani and Kurmanji. Throughout the south-central Kurdistan spoken Sorani. Kurmanji is spoken in the northern and western parts of Kurdistan. There are also local sub-dialects of the Kurdish language as Gorani and feyli under dialects of Sorani is spoken by few but mainly used in the songs. more

NEWROZ

In the Kurdish tradition is the celebration also a commemoration of a legendary overthrow of a tyrannical king for more than 2,500 years ago. Newroz celebrations are also a way to manifest Kurdish identity. To celebrate Newroz was banned in Turkey until 1995. 2010 was reintroduced prohibition to celebrate Newroz on days other than March 21. Today is the feast politically charged, and it usually annually conflicts between Kurds and the Turkish government. more

Who are the Kurds?

  • 21 October 2014
Kurdish men sit in the bazaar in Sulaimaniya, Iraq (17 October 2002)

Between 25 and 35 million Kurds inhabit a mountainous region straddling the borders of Turkey, Iraq, Syria, Iran and Armenia. They make up the fourth-largest ethnic group in the Middle East, but they have never obtained a permanent nation state.

In recent decades, Kurds have increasingly influenced regional developments, fighting for autonomy in Turkey and playing prominent roles in the conflicts in Iraq and Syria, where they have resisted the advance of the jihadist group, Islamic State (IS).

Where do they come from?

The Kurds are one of the indigenous people of the Mesopotamian plains and the highlands in what are now south-eastern Turkey, north-eastern Syria, northern Iraq, north-western Iran and south-western Armenia.

more

Middle East map showing Kurdish areas

Today, they form a distinctive community, united through race, culture and language, even though they have no standard dialect. They also adhere to a number of different religions and creeds, although the majority are Sunni Muslims.

Kurdistan: A State of Uncertainty


Why don’t they have a state?

A man gestures in front of the flag of Kurdistan at a demonstration in Athens, Greece (13 October 2014)

Image captionDespite their long history, the Kurds have never achieved a permanent nation state

In the early 20th Century, many Kurds began to consider the creation of a homeland – generally referred to as “Kurdistan”. After World War One and the defeat of the Ottoman Empire, the victorious Western allies made provision for a Kurdish state in the 1920 Treaty of Sevres.

Such hopes were dashed three years later, however, when the Treaty of Lausanne, which set the boundaries of modern Turkey, made no provision for a Kurdish state and left Kurds with minority status in their respective countries. Over the next 80 years, any move by Kurds to set up an independent state was brutally quashed.

Aiming to change the outcome of World War One


Why are Kurds at the forefront of the fight against IS?

Kurdish Peshmerga fighters on the front line in the Gwer district, south of Irbil, Iraq (15 September 2014)

Image captionIraqi Kurdish Peshmerga fighters have been fighting Islamic State in northern Iraq

In mid-2013, IS turned its sights on three Kurdish enclaves that bordered its territory in northern Syria. It launched repeated attacks that until mid-2014 were repelled by the Popular Protection Units (YPG) – the armed wing of the Syrian Kurdish Democratic Unity Party (PYD). The turning point was an offensive in Iraq in June that saw IS overrun the northern city of Mosul, routing Iraqi army divisions and seizing weaponry later moved to Syria.

The jihadists’ advance in Iraq also drew that country’s Kurds into the conflict. The government of Iraq’s semi-autonomous Kurdistan Region sent its Peshmerga forces to areas abandoned by the army.

For a time there were only minor clashes between IS and the Peshmerga, but in August the jihadists launched a shock offensive. The Peshmerga withdrew in disarray, allowing several towns inhabited by religious minorities to fall, notably Sinjar, where thousands of Yazidis where sheltering.

Smoke rises after an air strike on an Islamic State position in the Syrian town of Kobane (12 October 2014)

Image captionTurkish military personnel deployed along the Syrian border have not intervened in the battle for Kobane

Alarmed by the Peshmerga’s defeat and the potential massacre of the Yazidis fleeing Sinjar, the US launched air strikes in northern Iraq and sent military advisers. European countries meanwhile began sending weapons to the Peshmerga. The YPG and Turkish Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) also came to their aid.

Although the jihadists were gradually forced back by the Peshmerga in Iraq, they did not stop trying to capture the Kurdish enclaves in Syria. In mid-September, IS launched an assault on the enclave around the northern town of Kobane, forcing more than 160,000 people to flee into Turkey.

Despite this, Turkey refused to attack IS positions near the border or allow Kurds to cross to defend it, triggering Kurdish protests and a threat from the PKK to pull out of its peace talks with the government. However, it was not until mid-October that Ankara agreed to allow Peshmerga fighters to join the battle for Kobane.

Syria’s Kobane no longer so isolated

What has Kobane battle taught us?

Key events in battle for Kobane


Why is Turkey reluctant to help the Kurds in Kobane?

PKK supporters demonstrate in Paris after the arrest of Abdullah Ocalan (17 February 1999)

Image captionJailed PKK leader Abdullah Ocalan began peace talks with the Turkish government in 2012

There is deep-seated hostility between the Turkish state and the country’s Kurds, who constitute 15% to 20% of the population.

Kurds received harsh treatment at the hands of the Turkish authorities for generations. In response to uprisings in the 1920s and 1930s, many Kurds were resettled, Kurdish names and costumes were banned, the use of the Kurdish language was restricted and even the existence of a Kurdish ethnic identity was denied, with people designated “Mountain Turks”. more

PKK fighters in parade in northern Iraq (11 August 2005)

Image captionMore than 40,000 people have been killed since the PKK launched an armed struggle in 1984

In 1978, Abdullah Ocalan established the PKK, which called for an independent state within Turkey. Six years later, the group began an armed struggle. Since then, more than 40,000 people have been killed and hundreds of thousands displaced.

In the 1990s the PKK rolled back on its demand for independence, calling instead for greater cultural and political autonomy, but continued to fight. In 2012, the government and PKK began peace talks and the following year a ceasefire was agreed. PKK fighters were told to withdraw to northern Iraq, but clashes have continued.

Turkish soldiers filter refugees crossing the border near the Syrian town of Kobane (28 September 2014)

Image captionTurkey has allowed in more than 160,000 people, most of the Kurds, fleeing the fighting around Kobane

Although Ankara considers IS a threat, it also fears that Turkish Kurds will cross into Syria to join the PYD – an offshoot of the PKK – and then use its territory to launch attacks on Turkey. It has also said it is not prepared to step up efforts to help the US-led coalition against IS unless the removal of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad is also one of its goals.

Why Turkey prefers Iraq’s Kurds to its own

Turkey’s fear of a reignited Kurdish flame

PKK fighters face life after Turkey withdrawal

Profile: The PKK


What do Syria’s Kurds want?

Salih Muslim, head of the Democratic Unity Party (PYD) receives condolences from Syrian Kurds after his son Servan was killed in fighting with jihadist militants (15 October 2013)

Image captionThe Democratic Unity Party (PYD) is the dominant force in Syria’s Kurdish regions

Kurds make up between 7% and 10% of Syria’s population, with most living in the cities of Damascus and Aleppo, and in three, non-contiguous areas around Kobane, the north-western town of Afrin, and the north-eastern city of Qamishli.

Syria’s Kurds have long been suppressed and denied basic rights. Some 300,000 have been denied citizenship since the 1960s, and Kurdish land has been confiscated and redistributed to Arabs in an attempt to “Arabize” Kurdish regions. The state has also sought to limit Kurdish demands for greater autonomy by cracking down on protests and arresting political leaders.

A Kurdish fighter from the Popular Protection Units (YPG) shows his weapon decorated with its flag in Aleppo, Syria (7 June 2014)

Image captionThe Popular Protection Units (YPG) began clashing with Islamist and jihadist rebel groups in Syria in 2013

The Kurdish enclaves were relatively unscathed by the first two years of the Syrian conflict. The main Kurdish parties avoided taking sides. In mid-2012, government forces withdrew to concentrate on fighting the rebels elsewhere, after which Kurdish groups took control.

The Democratic Unity Party (PYD) quickly established itself as the dominant force, straining relations with smaller parties who formed the Kurdistan National Council (KNC). They nevertheless united to declare the formation of a Kurdish regional government in January 2014. They also stressed that they were not seeking independence but “local democratic administration”.

IS meets its match in Kobane

Syria’s Kurds fight to keep out jihadists


In 1970, the government offered a deal to end the fighting that gave the Kurds a de facto autonomous region. But it ultimately collapsed and fighting resumed in 1974. A year later, divisions within the KDP saw Jalal Talabani leave and form the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK).

Iraqi Kurdish refugees take shelter at a refugee camp in south-eastern Turkey after fleeing fighting between Iraqi government forces and Peshmerga in May 1991

Image captionSome 1.5 million Iraqi Kurds fled into Iran and Turkey after the 1991 rebellion was crushed

In the late 1970s, the government began settling Arabs in areas with Kurdish majorities, particularly around the oil-rich city of Kirkuk, and forcibly relocating Kurds. The policy was accelerated in the 1980s during the Iran-Iraq War, in which the Kurds backed the Islamic republic. In 1988, Saddam Hussein unleashed a campaign of vengeance on the Kurds that included the poison-gas attack on Halabja.

When Iraq was defeated in the 1991 Gulf War Barzani’s son, Massoud, led a Kurdish rebellion. Its violent suppression prompted the US and its allies to impose a no-fly zone in the north that allowed Kurds to enjoy self-rule. The KDP and PUK agreed to share power, but tensions rose and a four-year internal conflict erupted in 1994.

Massoud Barzani and Jalal Talabani at a news conference in Dokan (3 May 2009)

Image captionMassoud Barzani’s KDP and Jalal Talabani’s PUK share power in the Kurdistan Region

The two parties co-operated with the US-led invasion of Iraq in 2003 that toppled Saddam Hussein and have participated in all governments formed since then. They have also governed in coalition in the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG), created in 2005 to administer the three provinces of Dohuk, Irbil and Sulaimaniya.

After the IS offensive in June, the KRG sent the Peshmerga into disputed areas claimed by the Kurds and the central government, and then asked the Kurdish parliament to plan a referendum on independence.

However, it is unclear whether the Kurds will press ahead with self-determination, or push for a more independent entity within a federal Iraq.more

Iraqi Kurds call for weapons to combat IS

Massoud Barzani plans referendum on independence

Iraqi Kurdistan: State-in-the-making?

The Betrayal of the Kurds

Iraqi Kurdistan profile – timeline

Iraqi Kurdistan profile

Iraqi Kurdistan profile Iraq's 2005 Constitution recognises an autonomous Kurdistan region in the north of the country, run by the Kurdistan Regional Government. This was the outcome of decades of political and military efforts to secure self-rule by the Kurdish...

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About us Welcome to www.kurdstan.se/en This site is about Kurdistan culture, people, landscape, geografi,natur, religion and history.The website is for youand all others who speak English and for those who want to know more about Kurdistan. This page has been...

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World Kurds in Sweden Rally for Independence By Kira Walker 6 hours ago In-between shouts of “Biji Kurdistan,” children and adults from all four corners of Kurdistan stood by the dream of an independent state of their own. Photo by author   STOCKHOLM, Sweden – Waving...

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World Kurds in Sweden Rally for Independence By Kira Walker 6 hours ago In-between shouts of “Biji Kurdistan,” children and adults from all four corners of Kurdistan stood by the dream of an independent state of their own. Photo by author   STOCKHOLM, Sweden – Waving...