London, United Kingdom (uk.gov.krd) April the 14th marks anniversary of the genocidal Anfal operations carried out in 1988 by Saddam Hussein’s regime in which 182,000 civilians lost their lives, thousands of villages were destroyed, bringing the total destroyed since the 1970s to 4,500.
This year Mr Karwan Jamal Tahir delivered a keynote speech at a special event held by Rising Global Peace Forum. The panel discussion covered insights, assessing the prospect of preventing genocide and other mass atrocities committed against the Kurds. The event was moderated by Dr Bahar Baser Ozturk, Associate Professor at Centre for Trust, Peace and Social Relations, Coventry University.
High Representative Karwan spoke of the origins and development of genocidal campaigns against the Kurdish nations. He said: “The Kurdish annual calendar is full of dark days, where our fellow citizens have been victimised in a large scale. March and April are months of commemoration of many tumultuous events as well as joyful days which we have turned them into building a prosperous future.” High Representative Karwan added:
“We will continue to secure international recognition for the crimes committed against the Kurdish people regardless of what challenges or crisis we endure to ensure such inhuman and cruel acts of terror are prevented from ever happening again.”
On nation-building and genocide, Dr Ibrahim Sadiq, a Kurdish author of a book on Origins of the Kurdish Genocide: Nation Building and Genocide as a Civilizing and De-Civilizing Process – Kurdish Societies, Politics, and International Relations shared his academic perspectives on the genocide, in the sense of searching for the causes and roots of the genocide. He said: “The Anfal campaigns took place in 1988, but the process started as far back as the end of the sixties and the beginning of the seventies of the last century.”
“This essence of the process has been approached in the framework of the civilizing and de-civilizing process as a main theory of the German sociologist, Norbert Elias”, Dr Ibrahim added.
The panel was also addressed by Houzan Mahmoud, a Kurdish author of Kurdish Women’s Stories book. She stated that her academic contribution focuses on “stories of imprisonment, exile, disappearances of loved ones, gender-based violence, uprisings, feminist activism and armed resistance”, including first-hand accounts of political moments from the 1960s to today. She said:
“I would like to pay tribute to every single person who lost their lives or were killed in this notorious Anfal campaign.”
The virtual event was recorded to be used for academic purposes at Coventry University.