Kurdish language is now included in Armenian school curriculum. Photo: Safin Hamed/Getty Images
ERBIL, Kurdistan Region – The Armenian school curriculum now includes studies in the Kurdish language, according to the editor-in-chief of the oldest Kurdish newspaper.
“In areas where Kurds are living in Armenia, Kurdish children can study in the Kurdish language,” said Titale Kerem, editor-in-chief of Riya Taze. “As part of preparations for the new school year, several Kurdish books, including literature for all grades, have been printed.”
Alixan Mame, head of the Armenia Writers Union, told Armenpress that at least 13 Kurdish books for grade one through twelve have been printed, but they lack teachers.
“Such textbooks have not been published in the history of the Kurdish people. Thirteen textbooks were published. A chance was given in Armenia to publish textbooks with a unique syllabus and scientific formulation. This is a really historical event in the Kurdish people’s life," said Mame.
The books have been printed by Spika publication house, sponsored by the Armenian government.
Kurdish and the Yezidi language ezdiki, are both already taught at the university level in Armenia.
An estimated 3,000,000 people live in Armenia, including approximately 40,000 Yezidis living in western parts of the country.
The Yezidis arrived as refugees from the Ottoman Empire in the 19th century and are the largest minority in the mainly Christian country. The community is mostly composed of Yezidis from Turkey who settled in Transcaucasia – present day Armenia, Azerbaijan, and Georgia.
Riya Taze is the longest-running Kurdish newspaper. It was founded in Armenia in 1932. There is also a Kurdish radio station broadcasting from the capital of Armenia, Yerevan.