The Kurdish struggle remains of the most compelling storylines in the geopolitical labyrinth that is the Middle East. This includes Kurdish confrontations with ISIS in Syria, the potential for increased sovereignty in Iraq, and nearly forty years of conflict in Turkey. The Kurds of Iran are also active, if not largely ignored by the international community.
The history of Kurds in Iran is one of deep rooted resistance and everlasting dreams of a new tomorrow. Though the movement has undergone many shifts and changes, it remains alive today.
A Tradition of Resistance
In May of 2015, Mahabad the capital of Iran’s Kurdish region, burned as riots and protests spread following the mysterious death of a young woman in the city. Activists claimed that a young Kurdish woman fell to her death from the window of a hotel, while escaping an attempted rape by an Iranian security official. The protests were not only a reminder of the latent rage which exists in the Kurdish population, but serve as a symbolic reminder of the flame that has burned within the city of Mahabad.
“All the players involved are benefiting in some way, except for the Kurds. And the Kurds are not just fighting for their own stability. But they hope to bring peace to the entire region, and it can be possible because we are inclusive.”
Repressed at Home, Ignored by the West
Despite the short term alliances between the Kurds and the West, widespread recognition for the rights of Kurds remains uneven, if not completely absent from mainstream discourse. This includes both inside Iran and abroad.