Feb 09, 2007

Iranian Kurdistan: Admitted to UNPO

Iranian Kurds will now join other UNPO Members within Iran, as they work towards a federal future for Iran and its minority communities.
The latest meeting of the UNPO Presidency, which met from 01 – 03 February at the European Parliament in Brussels, has continued pursuit of UNPO’s goal of giving a voice to all unrepresented nations and peoples, by welcoming Iranian Kurdistan into the organisation.

[More on this Meeting of the UNPO Presidency]


There are approximately 30 million Kurds living throughout the world, with between 5 and 6 million presently living within Iran and constituting 7 percent of its population. Their aspirations towards self-governance have long historical roots, but have suffered a renewed wave of systematic repression since the fall of the short-lived Republic of Mahabad (Kurdistan) in 1946.

The Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan (PDKI) was founded in 1945, and is now at the forefront of peaceful efforts to restore democracy, human rights, and self-government to the people of Iranian Kurdistan. The PDKI believes this only to be possible within a secular and federal Iran, where a federal system, based on ethnic and geographical nationalities, would unite all Iran’s minorities, whilst respecting their inherent right to self-rule.

Many of the PDKI’s leaders were imprisoned following the collapse of the Republic of Mahabad in 1946, including its President and Leader. Further raids and crackdowns by the authorities in 1959 and 1964 forced the party further underground and many of its activists into exile.

Since the 1970s the PDKI has however enjoyed renewed popular support, embracing technological advances in the areas of communication and media in order to unite a growing number of Iranian Kurds behind its democratic and non-violent principles. Joining UNPO will enable PDKI to continue this campaign, as well as enjoy increased levels of cooperation with other UNPO Members within Iran, as they continue to work towards a similar vision of a federal republic.