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Kurdish Anger against Iran Hangings Spills across Borders

By Rudaw 3/11/2013
A Kurdish woman protesting against the execution of Kurdish prisoners in front of the Iranian consulate in Erbil.
A Kurdish woman protesting against the execution of Kurdish prisoners in front of the Iranian consulate in Erbil.

ERBIL, Kurdistan Region – Kurds in Iraq and Turkey staged protests against the hanging of two Kurdish activists in Iran, where the only militant Kurdish group still locked in armed struggle against Tehran said it had killed 10 Revolutionary Guards in retaliation for the executions.

Iran hanged Kurdish activists Habibollah Golparipour and Reza Ismaili last week, despite pleas by Kurdish political parties in Iran and human rights organizations, including London-based Amnesty International.

The executions were condemned by Kurdish protesters in Turkey and Iraq’s autonomous Kurdistan Region.

On Thursday, thousands of Kurds in Turkey’s predominantly Kurdish Hakkari province (Colemerg in Kurdish) marched to the Esendere border crossing with Iran.

They chanted slogans supporting the militant Kurdistan Workers’ Party and its leader Abdullah Ocalan, who remains jailed in Turkey, according to the pro-PKK Firat News.

That rally came a day after the Land Protection Youth Organization held a gathering outside the Iranian Consulate in Erbil, capital of the autonomous Kurdistan Region in northern Iraq.

“The Kurdish people should be united against this aggression and the execution of the Kurds will only make us persist more for our rights,” the youth group said in a statement.

Also on Wednesday, the underground Free Life Party of Kurdistan (PJAK), which had earlier referred to Golparipour as a “senior leader” and had vowed to avenge his death, claimed it had made good on that promise.

PJAK, which has close ties to the PKK, issued a statement saying its guerrillas had killed 10 Iranian Revolutionary Guards in the Maku region of Iran’s West Azerbaijan province, which borders Turkey.

The group also claimed responsibility for killing several other Iranian border guards in the same region in early October.

According to New York-based Human Rights Watch (HRW), Golparipour was executed in the northwestern town of Urumiyeh, without his family being notified.

Golparipour was a prominent Kurdish political activist in Iranian Kurdistan. He was arrested and sentenced to death for alleged links to PJAK, which unlike other Kurdish groups in Iran has continued its armed struggle for greater Kurdish rights in Iran.

His lawyer said that Golparipour was sentenced to death for books and writings found during his arrest, according to an HRW report.

The executions of the two Kurds brought wide condemnation by Iranian Kurdish parties, which complained that nothing appears to have changed for the country’s large Kurdish minority since the June election of President Hassan Rouhani. The groups vowed to continue their struggle for Kurdish rights in Iran.

The Kurdistan Democratic Party of Iran (KDPI) demanded international support to halt the execution of Kurds in Iran. “The Kurdish share in Iran has been only execution and suppression,” it said.

The Kurds, who number some 30-40 million according to unofficial estimates, are divided in a region of the Middle East where Syria, Iraq, Iran and Turkey intersect. The Kurds have been in constant struggle with regimes in each of those countries for greater rights.

According to Amnesty International, only China ranks above Iran in the number of prisoners executed each year.


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Demen | 3/11/2013
Rudaw instead makes propaganda against PYD,Rojava,YPG and bring kurdish people against each other should take care more about kurds in Iran it will be more respectable !
Russel Check | 3/11/2013
No country in the world oppresses Kurds more than Iran, they have taken the nr. 1 spot for almost 2 decades and they easily get away with it! The hypocritical racist Iranian diaspora never make an issue out of it, in fact they agree with the regime only on two issues, the nuclear issue and oppressing minorities that resist Persianization specially Kurds. They go off the charts on social media and by protesting if a Persian or Bahai or Christian is smacked slightly by the regime but Kurds getting hanged daily? most times it's not even reported, and this is the opposition groups the Kurdish parties have tried to appease and want too cooperate with. If they don't care when Kurds are jailed, tortured and hanged daily imagine what will happen if they come to power.
Bakir Lashkari
Bakir Lashkari | 4/11/2013
Hanging peopele in Iran is internationally known as a crime agianst the humanity. Usually in Europe they condem Iran for asuch as worthwhile of boycotting Iran and considering Iran regime inhuman and not as a civilized Country! However I do not know howmany times i am writing do not ever never believe in your enemies words and promises. If do not give them a pain, they even do not consider you that you exist. Enemy of our enemy is our friend! When do we learn to strike while the Iron is hot. Anybody who is believing that Iran has a good intentions with the KRG and its Kurdistan territories I belive he is naif and does have aclue about the bda intentions of Iranian Mulla's who sees the Kurds like the Jews ! One thing I must admin we have now a stick in our hand that both sides are filthy! However we should be very careful how to balance the stick in the middle and try to see which is detoriating and smelling like the hell, so we can use our full power, especially on the economical sides cause them a great damage! You see most of the Kurds in Iran believed in Al Rohani that he might do something for the Kurdistan cultural and language. Iran is considering the Kurdistan part its their land and beloning to the Shiite Regime in one hand and on the other hand Iran were hoping that the KRG should have had let Iran to use the region to pass over to Syria. It is pitty that neither the USA, Europe and Israel not attacking the cnuclair facilities of Iran! Hopefully after the disramement of chemical weapons of Syria, the allies will have a great opportunity to dela with Iran differntly and more strongly agianst the game and smile of Iran towrards the outside of the world. Hopefully Saudia Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Kuwait will take also a strong attidudes and approach against its Iran's powerplay.In this case the Kurds are suffering so far a great deal in Iran and they have no choice but start accepting the situation as its and at the same time deplying the outside world to suqeesze Iran with a total boycotting dramatically. The total and financial conomical boycooting of Iran, is the only oprion to let the Iranian Mulla's leave the power soon. But the question will be, What is next for the Kurds in Iran? The only option is: Strike while the Iron is Hot!
Awat | 4/11/2013
The struggle of Kurdish in Rojava has been sacrificed to the relation of KRG and mainly PUK to the most barbaric region in Middle East of Molla! KRG should radically change their policy and closed relation to fascist IRAN. Why there is salience in Solemany and Erbil this is your brother in other side of Kurdistan that has been always supported you since 1947, what happened? Why the business and money should keep your relation with IRAN, How long the Kurd of Iran should accept this violation of brotherhood from Kurdistan Iraq, why Solemany became the center of espionage for Iran! Way mam Jalal has open so many offices for espionage of Iran in Solemany? People from Rojava and the history will never forgot that you have commercialized the Rojava struggle and leaders in a camp in a very primitive situation as prisoners of Iran. Howe much money they received to stop the struggle of Kurdistan and how many years. The regime of Molla kills almost every day our people in Rojava, shames for your leaders in Solemany Goran and PUK to sell our people to Molla!
changeriannow | 4/11/2013
Kurds, who are one of Iran's largest minorities, continue to face discrimination in regards to their religious, economic and cultural rights.In terms of land rights, there are high levels of property confiscation and governmental neglect in the Kurdish region of north-west Iran – Iranian Kurdistan, Kermanshah and Ilam provinces. The Kurdish region has abundant water resources. Dams have been built by the government to facilitate water irrigation and for hydroelectric power generation, but Kurds are generally excluded from the benefits of this investment.
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