In pictures: Kurdish schools resume in Khurmatu, but with low turnout
Kurdish education has resumed in Khurmatu for the first time since the fall of the diverse city to Iraqi forces last October.
Halkawt High School, which was founded after the US-led invasion of Iraq in 2003, is now functioning with just 160 of the 700 students who were enrolled prior to the October 16 events.
The Kurdish parliament described the killings, burning and looting houses in the city as genocide when Iraqi forces supported by Iran-backed Hashd al-Shaabi paramilitaries drove out Peshmerga.
Tens of thousands of Kurdish civilians were displaced in the aftermath of the deadly clashes. Some have since returned.
The flag of Kurdistan remains banned in the disputed or Kurdistani areas including in Tuz Khurmatu, 155 kilometers south of Erbil city and near Kirkuk.
Last year, authorities in the Kurdistan Region issued a directive that would allow displaced Khurmatu students to continue to pursue their education while displaced, some of them in makeshift camps.
Several schools now have been merged because the number of education staff and students is well below the pre-October 16 level.