Leader Masoud Barzani pays tribute to Feyli Kurds on genocide 44th anniversary

Leader Masoud Barzani pays tribute to Feyli Kurds on genocide 44th anniversary

Shafaq News / Kurdistan Democratic Party’s (KDP) leader Masoud Barzani described the harrowing tragedy endured by the Feyli Kurds on Thursday, portraying it as a chapter within a broader narrative of systematic atrocities perpetrated by successive regimes in Iraq.

In commemorating the 44th anniversary of the Feyli Kurds' genocide, Barzani emphasized the struggles faced by Feyli Kurdish brothers and sisters, recounting their ordeal of displacement within the Iraqi state. “Their sole crime was supporting the Kurdish revolution and being Kurds.”

He further stated that “the expulsion and deprivation of hundreds of thousands of Feyli Kurds of their civil status, along with the disappearance of thousands of Feyli youth at the hands of the former Iraqi regime, constituted a major crime and persecution.”

“This was part of a series of organized crimes committed by successive Iraqi governments.”

Masoud Barzani also stressed the “Iraqi federal government's obligation to fulfill its commitments to reinstating their citizenship, returning their assets and properties, and resolving their grievances.”

In his concluding remarks, the Kurdish leader reflected, “On this solemn occasion marking the 44th anniversary of the Feyli Kurds' genocide, we pay homage to the spirits of the fallen Feyli Kurds and all those who sacrificed their lives in the pursuit of Kurdish freedom. Let us reaffirm that the unwavering commitment and selfless dedication of our Feyli brothers and sisters to their cause and the noble Kurdish liberation movement shall forever remain etched in our collective memory, never to be forgotten.”

Noteworthy, during Saddam Hussein's regime, which spanned nearly three decades, thousands of young Feyli Kurds were forcibly relocated to undisclosed destinations, their fates shrouded in uncertainty, with indications suggesting that many perished in custody or were subjected to extrajudicial executions and buried in mass graves.

The Ba'athist regime initiated a concerted campaign in the late 1970s and early 1980s to uproot the Feyli Kurds, stripping them of their Iraqi citizenship and seizing their assets. They endured deportation, displacement, arrests, and executions during the tenures of former Presidents Ahmed Hassan al-Bakr in 1970 and 1975, followed by Saddam Hussein in 1980.

In 2010, the Supreme Criminal Court rendered its verdict on the crimes of displacement and confiscation of rights perpetrated against the Feyli Kurds, unequivocally designating them as acts of genocide. 

Subsequently, on December 8, 2010, the Iraqi government committed to compensating the Feyli Kurds, with a concurrent resolution passed by the Council of Representatives on August 1, 2010, recognizing the forced displacement and disappearance of the Feyli Kurds as genocide.

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