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About the Campaign E-petition

 

On the 7th March 2012, an e-petition was launched urging the UK Government to recognise the genocide of Kurdish people in Iraq from the 1960s to the late 1980s. It was sponsored by Nadhim Zahawi, the MP for Stratford-upon-Avon and was supported by numerous MPs from all political parties, Peers, the community and many friends of Kurdistan.

 

More than 27,000 people signed the e-petition, which helped Nadhim Zahawi MP to secure a debate in Parliament on the 28th February 2013. It was the first time in history that the Kurdish genocide was debated in the British Parliament – a huge milestone for the Kurdish people and the campaign for recognition.

 

At the end of the historic debate, the UK Parliament passed a motion to formally recognise the mass murder of Kurdish people in Iraq as genocide.

 

Kurdish survivors of the chemical weapons attack in Halabja, who are now British citizens, were in the gallery to listen to the debate. Joining them, were the KRG Anfal minister, Aram Ahmed, KRG High Representative to the UK, Ms. Bayan Sami Abdul Rahman and the Iraqi embassy's chief of mission. All three sat together in the gallery - illustrating the new Iraq.

 

Message from Nadhim Zahawi MP, sponsor of the petition

 

"Genocide is the worst crime that can be committed by humanity, and it befell Iraqi Kurds. It is our duty to remember and honour the victims. The recognition of the genocide by the British Government is crucial to ensuring that it never happens again."

 

What the e-petition says

We urge the Government to recognise formally the Genocide against the people of Iraqi Kurdistan and to encourage the EU and UN to do likewise. This will enable Kurdish people, many in the UK, to achieve justice for their considerable loss. It would also enable Britain, the home of democracy and freedom, to send out a message of support for international conventions and human rights. The Genocide perpetrated over decades, known collectively as the Anfal, began with the arabisation of villages around Kirkuk in 1963. It involved the deportation and disappearances of Faylee Kurds in the 1970s-80s, the murder of 8,000 male Barzanis in 1983, the use of chemical weapons in the late 1980s, most notably against Halabja, and finally the Anfal campaign of 1987-88. Hundreds of thousands of innocent people perished, families were torn apart, with continuing health problems, and 4,500 villages were destroyed between 1976 and 1988 undermining the potential of Iraqi Kurdistan's agricultural resources.

 

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