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Anfal campaign receives national day of remembrance

WED, 18 APR 2007 15:57 | Kurdish Globe

A mass grave in Iraq
Erbil - The Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) has declared April 14 to be a yearly anniversary in remembrance of the notorious Anfal Campaign that killed over 100,000 Kurds.

Kurdistan Parliament held a special session in memory of the 19th anniversary of the Anfal Campaign, which was carried out by former Iraqi government of Saddam Hussein. KRG Prime Minister Nechirvan Barzani and a number of ministers also attended the session.

"We cannot forget the Anfal Campaign, because it is an identity of our people in the past and for the future," said Kurdistan Parliament speaker Adnan Mufti. He explained that although Anfal began before April 14, 1988, the Ba'ath government launched the largest Anfal operations in the Garmyan areas in south and southeast of Suleimanya on that day.

During the session, Barzani said that his government has decided to add the history of the Anfal Campaign to school textbooks and to give Anfal survivors residential land and enough monthly salary to improve their standard of living.

"We decided to make April 14 of every year the anniversary of the Anfal Campaign so that our people will not forget the crimes of Saddam's regime against the people of Kurdistan," said Barzani, adding, "We decided to make this day the anniversary of Anfal in order to prevent further genocidal practices from happening against the Kurdistan people."

Barzani pointed out that "some people believe the policy of genocide against Kurdish people was part of the Iraq-Iran war, but we believe that war only played a factor in the facilitation of the Anfal Campaign."

Anfal was an anti-Kurdish campaign led by the Iraqi government of Saddam Hussein between 1986 and 1989 (during and just after the Iran-Iraq war). It ended in 1988.

The campaign takes its name from Surat Al-Anfal in the Qur'an. It was used as a code name by the former Iraqi Ba'athist regime for a series of military campaigns against Kurdish people. It is reported that during the campaign,182, 000 Kurds disappeared or were murdered, and 4,000 Kurdish villages were destroyed.

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