Anfal genocide

Last updated

Anfal genocide
Part of the Iraqi–Kurdish conflict and the Iran–Iraq War
Iraqi mass grave.jpg
Human bones found at a mass grave site in Iraqi Kurdistan, July 15, 2005
Location Iraqi Kurdistan
Date12 March 1986 – 7 June 1989 (in strict sense
23 February 1988 – 6 September 1988)
TargetExterminating Kurdish opposition
Attack type
Genocide, mass murder, ethnic cleansing, forced disappearance, counter-insurgency
Deaths50,000–100,000 (according to Human Rights Watch, [1] although Kurdish officials have claimed that the figure could be as high as 182,000) [2]
Perpetrators Government of Iraq, especially Ali Hassan al-Majid
Motive Anti-Kurdish sentiment, Arabization, Eliminate Peshmerga resistance and insurgency.

The Anfal genocide [3] [4] [5] [6] killed between 50,000 [1] and 182,000 [2] Kurds. It was committed during the Al-Anfal campaign (Harakat al-Anfal/Homleh al-Anfal) (Kurdish : پڕۆسەی ئەنفال) (Arabic : حملة الأنفال) led by Ali Hassan al-Majid, on the orders of President Saddam Hussein, against Iraqi Kurdistan in northern Iraq during the final stages of the Iran–Iraq War.


The campaign's name was taken from the title of Qur'anic chapter 8 (al-ʾanfāl), which was used as a code name by the former Iraqi Ba'athist Government for a series of systematic attacks against the Kurdish fighters in northern Iraq between 1986 and 1989, with the peak in 1988. Sweden, Norway, South Korea and the United Kingdom officially recognize the Anfal campaign as a genocide. [7]

The genocide was part of the destruction of Kurdish villages during the Iraqi Arabization campaign.


Al-Anfal is the eighth sura, or chapter, of the Qur'an. It explains the triumph of 313 followers of the new Muslim faith over almost 900 pagans at the Battle of Badr in 624 AD. "Al Anfal" literally means the spoils (of war) and was used to describe the military campaign of extermination and looting commanded by Ali Hassan al-Majid. His orders informed jash (Kurdish collaborators with the Baathists, literally "donkey's foal" in Kurdish) units that taking cattle, sheep, goats, money, weapons and even women was legal. [8]


The Anfal campaign began in 1986, and lasted until 1989, and was headed by Ali Hassan al-Majid, a cousin of Iraqi President Saddam Hussein from Saddam's hometown of Tikrit. The Anfal campaign included the use of ground offensives, aerial bombing, systematic destruction of settlements, mass deportation, firing squads, and chemical warfare, which earned al-Majid the nickname of "Chemical Ali". The Iraqi Army was supported by Kurdish collaborators who were armed by the Iraqi government, the so-called Jash forces, who led Iraqi troops to Kurdish villages that often did not figure on maps as well as to their hideouts in the mountains. The Jash forces frequently made false promises of amnesty and safe passage. [9]

Thousands of civilians were killed during the anti-insurgent campaigns, from early 1987 to late 1988. The attacks were part of a long campaign that destroyed approximately 4,500 Kurdish and at least 31 Assyrian Christian villages in northern Iraq and displaced at least a million of the estimated 3.5 million Iraqi Kurds. Amnesty International collected the names of more than 17,000 people who had "disappeared" in 1988. [10] [11] The campaign has been characterized as genocidal in nature. [12] It is also characterized as gendercidal, because "battle-age" men were the primary targets, according to Human Rights Watch/Middle East. [13] According to the Iraqi prosecutors and Kurdish officials, as many as 180,000 people were killed. [14]

Under U.S. President Ronald Reagan, the United States continued to give military aid to Saddam Hussein, even after reports of the use of poison gas on Kurdish civilians. [15] [16] [17]


In March 1987, Ali Hassan al-Majid was appointed secretary-general of the Ba'ath Party's Northern Bureau, [18] which included Iraqi Kurdistan. Under al-Majid, control of policies against the Kurdish insurgents passed from the Iraqi Army to the Ba'ath Party.

Al-Anfal campaign
Part of the Iraqi–Kurdish conflict and the Iran–Iraq War
(In strict sense 23 February 1988 6 September 1988)

Insurgency weakened but not quelled

  • Destruction of 4,500 villages.
Commanders and leaders
Units involved
200,000 3,500
Casualties and losses
50,000–182,000 civilians killed [20] [2]

Military operations and chemical attacks

Anfal, officially conducted in 1988, had eight stages (Anfal 1–Anfal 8) altogether, seven of which targeted areas controlled by the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan. The Kurdish Democratic Party-controlled areas in the northwest of Iraqi Kurdistan, which the regime regarded as a lesser threat, were the target of the Final Anfal operation in late August and early September 1988. For those assaults, the Iraqis mustered up to 200,000 soldiers with air support against Kurdish guerrilla forces that numbered no more than a few thousand.

Anfal 1

The first Anfal stage was conducted between 23 February and 18 March 1988. It started with artillery and air strikes in the early hours of 23 February 1988. Then, several hours later, there were attacks at the Jafali Valley headquarters of the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan near the Iranian border, and the command centers in Sargallu and Bargallu. There was heavy resistance by the Peshmerga. The battles were conducted in a theater around 1, 154 square kilometres. [21] The villages of Gwezeela, Chalawi, Haladin and Yakhsamar were attacked with poison gas. During mid March, the PUK, in an alliance with Iranian troops and other Kurdish factions, captured Halabja. [22] This led to the poison gas attack on Halabja on 16 March 1988, [22] during which 3,200–5,000 Kurdish people were killed, most of them civilians. [23] [24] The Peshmerga managed to open a flight route to Iran through which a part of the population in the Jafali Valley was able to flee. During the first Anfal campaign, no prisoners were taken by the Iraqi army.

Anfal 2

During the second Anfal from 22 March and 2 April 1988, the Qara Dagh region, including Bazian and Darbandikhan, in the Suleimanya governorate, was targeted. Again several villages were attacked with poison gas. Villages attacked with poisonous gas were Safaran, Sewsenan, Belekjar, Serko and Meyoo. The attacks began on March 22 after Nowruz, surprising the Peshmerga. Although of shorter duration, Peshmerga suffered more severe casualties in this attack than the first Anfal. [25] As a result of the attack, the majority of the population in the Qara Dagh region fled in direction Suleimanya. Many fugitives were detained by the Iraqi forces, and the men were separated from the women. The men were not seen again. The women were transported to camps. The population that managed to flee, fled to the Garmia region. [26]

Anfal 3

In the next Anfal campaign from 7 April to 20 April 1988, the Garmian region east of Suleimanya was targeted. In this campaign, many women and children disappeared. The only village attacked with chemical weapons was Tazashar. Many were lured to come towards the Iraqi forces due to an amnesty which was announced through a loudspeaker of a mosque in Qader Karam from 10–12 April. The announced amnesty was a trap, and many who surrendered were detained. Some civilians were able to bribe Kurdish collaborators of the Iraqi Army and fled to Laylan or Shorsh. [27]

Anfal 4

Anfal 4 took place between 3–8 May 1988 in the valley of the Little Zab, which forms the border of the provinces of Erbil and Kirkuk. The morale of the Iraqi army was on the rise due to the capture of the Faw Peninsula on the 17–18 April 1988 from Iran in the Iran–Iraq war. [28] Major poisonous gas attacks were perpetrated in Askar and Goktapa. [29] Again it was announced an amnesty was issued, which turned out to be false. Many of the ones who surrendered were arrested. Men were separated from the women. [30]

Anfal 5, 6 and 7

In these three consecutive attacks between 15 May and 16 of August 1988, the valleys of Rawandiz and Shaqlawa were targeted, and the attacks had different success. The Anfal 5 failed completely; therefore, two more attacks were necessary to gain Iraqi governmental control over the valleys. The Peshmerga commander of the region, Kosrat Abdullah, was well prepared for a long siege with stores of ammunition and food. He also reached an agreement with the Kurdish collaborators of the Iraqi Army, so the civilians could flee. The villages Hiran, Balisan, Smaquli, Malakan, Shek Wasan, Ware, Seran and Kaniba were attacked with poisonous gas. After the Anfal 7 attack the valleys were under the control of the Iraqi government. [30]

Anfal 8

The last Anfal was aimed at the region controlled by the KDP named Badinan and took place from 25 August to 6 September 1988. In this campaign, the villages of Wirmeli, Barkavreh, Bilejane, Glenaska, Zewa Shkan, Tuka and Ikmala were targeted with chemical attacks. After tens of thousands of Kurds fled to Turkey, the Iraqi Army blocked the route to Turkey on the 26 August 1988. The population who did not manage to flee was arrested, and the men were separated from the women and children. The men were executed, and the women and children brought to camps. [31]

Concentration camps and extermination

When captured, Kurdish populations were transported to detention centers (notably Topzawa, near the city of Kirkuk), and adult and teenage males, who were viewed as possible insurgents, were separated from the civilians. According to Human Rights Watch/Middle East,

With only minor variations... the standard pattern for sorting new arrivals [at Topzawa was as follows]. Men and women were segregated on the spot as soon as the trucks had rolled to a halt in the base's large central courtyard or parade ground. The process was brutal. ... A little later, the men were further divided by age, small children were kept with their mothers, and the elderly and infirm were shunted off to separate quarters. Men and teenage boys considered to be of an age to use a weapon were herded together. Roughly speaking, this meant males of between fifteen and fifty, but there was no rigorous check of identity documents, and strict chronological age seems to have been less of a criterion than size and appearance. A strapping twelve-year-old might fail to make the cut; an undersized sixteen-year-old might be told to remain with his female relatives.... It was then time to process the younger males. They were split into smaller groups.... Once duly registered, the prisoners were hustled into large rooms, or halls, each filled with the residents of a single area.... Although the conditions at Topzawa were appalling for everyone, the most grossly overcrowded quarter seem to have been those where the male detainees were held.... For the men, beatings were routine. [32] :143–45

After a few days in the camps, the men accused of being insurgents were trucked off to be killed in mass executions.

In its book Iraq's Crime of Genocide, Human Rights Watch/Middle East writes: "Throughout Iraqi Kurdistan, although women and children vanished in certain clearly defined areas, adult males who were captured disappeared in mass. ... It is apparent that a principal purpose of Anfal was to exterminate all adult males of military service age captured in rural Iraqi Kurdistan." [32] :96,170 Only a handful survived the execution squads. Even amidst this most systematic slaughter of adult men and boys, however, "hundreds of women and young children perished, too," but "the causes of their deaths were different—gassing, starvation, exposure, and willful neglect—rather than bullets fired from a Kalashnikov." [32] :191 Nevertheless, on 1 September 2004, U.S. forces in Iraq discovered hundreds of bodies of Kurdish women and children at the site near Hatra, who are believed to have been executed in early 1988, or late 1987. [33]

The focus of the Iraqi killing campaign varied from one stage of Anfal to another. The most exclusive targeting of the male population occurred during the final Anfal (25 August – 6 September 1988). It was launched immediately after the signing of a ceasefire with Iran, which allowed the transfer of large numbers of men and military supplies from the southern battlefronts. The final Anfal focused on "the steep, narrow valleys of Badinan, a four-thousand-square mile (10,360 km²) chunk of the Zagros Mountains bounded on the east by the Great Zab and on the north by Turkey." There, uniquely in the Anfal campaigns, lists of the "disappeared" provided to Human Rights Watch/Middle East by survivors "invariably included only adult and teenage males, with the single exception of Assyrians and Yezidi Kurds," who were subsidiary targets of the slaughter. Many of the men of Badinan did not make it to the "processing" stations but were simply "lined up and murdered at their point of capture, summarily executed by firing squads on the authority of a local military officer." (Iraq's Crime of Genocide, pp. 178, 190, 192; on the fate of the Christians and Yezidi Kurds, see pp. 209–13. [32] )

On 20 June 1987, Directive SF/4008 was issued, under al-Majid's signature. Of greatest significance is clause 5. Referring to those areas designated "prohibited zones," al-Majid ordered that "all persons captured in those villages shall be detained and interrogated by the security services and those between the ages of 15 and 70 shall be executed after any useful information has been obtained from them, of which we should be duly notified." However, it seems clear from the application of the policy that it referred only to males "between the ages of 15 and 70." Human Rights Watch/Middle East takes that as given and writes that clause 5's "order [was] to kill all adult males" and later writes: "Under the terms of al-Majid's June 1987, directives, death was the automatic penalty for any male of an age to bear arms who was found in an Anfal area." [32] :11,14 A subsequent directive on 6 September 1987, supports this conclusion: it calls for "the deportation of... families to the areas where there saboteur relatives are..., except for the male [members], between the ages of 12 inclusive and 50 inclusive, who must be detained." (Cited in Iraq's Crime of Genocide [32] :298)


"Arabization," another major element of al-Anfal, was a tactic used by Saddam Hussein's regime to drive pro-insurgent populations out of their homes in villages and cities like Kirkuk, which are in the valuable oil field areas, and relocate them in the southern parts of Iraq. [34] The campaign used heavy population redistribution, most notably in Kirkuk, the results of which now plague negotiations between Iraq's Shi'a United Iraqi Alliance and the Kurdish Kurdistani Alliance. Saddam's Ba'athist regime built several public housing facilities in Kirkuk as part of his "Arabization," shifting poor Arabs from Iraq's southern regions to Kirkuk with the lure of inexpensive housing. Another part of the arabization campaign was the census of October 1987. Citizens who failed to turn up for the October 1987 census were not anymore recognized as Iraqi citizens. Most of the Kurdish population who learned that a census was taking place, did not take part in the census. [18]

Iraq's Kurds now strongly resent Arabs still residing in Ba'ath-era Kirkuk housing and view them as a barrier to Kirkuk's recognition as a Kurdish city (and regional seat) in the Kurdistan Region. Major General Wafiq al Samarrai is quoted to have said: "You can kill half a million Kurds in Erbil, but it wont change anything; it will still be Kurdish, but killing 50,000 Kurds in Kirkuk will finish the Kurdish cause forever." [35]


In September 1988, the Iraqi Government was satisfied with its achievements. The male population between 15 and 50 had either been killed or fled. The Kurdish resistance fled to Iran and was no longer a threat for Iraq. An amnesty was issued and the detained women, children and elderly were released. [36]

Documenting events

In August 2013, after many years of relationship-building, Imani Lee Language Services entered a multi-year and multi-phased agreement with the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG), a self-proclaimed autonomous state within the borders of Iraq, on an important project of historical significance.

The first phase of the project concerned the translation of historical documents related to the events that happened in Halabja, Kurdistan, Iraq on 16 March 1988, when Saddam Hussein's regime bombed the entire district with chemical weapons in the closing days of the Iran–Iraq War, resulting in the deaths of an estimated 5,000 Kurds. The attack on Halabja has been well-documented as being the single most brutal attack of the regime as well as the deadliest chemical weapons attack against a civilian population in the history of the world. Today, many of the living Kurdish civilians affected by the chemical attack still suffer from various illnesses both psychological and physical in addition to the birth defects of their progeny.

For years, the victims of the attack and the KRG have tried to tell their story to the rest of the world. Their effort has included petitioning international countries to recognize the attack as an official act of genocide.

The Kurdish Genocide has been published in Halabja: Facing the Poisons of Death, A Legal Reading of the Event and the Supreme Iraqi Criminal Court Documents, authored by Bakr Hamah Seddik Arif, a lawyer and member of the Iraqi Parliament.


According to Human Rights Watch, during the Anfal campaign, the Iraqi government did the following:

Violation of human rights

The campaigns of 1987–89 were characterized by the following human rights violations:

  1. mass summary executions and mass disappearance of many tens of thousands of non-combatants, including large numbers of women and children, and sometimes the entire population of villages; 17,000 persons are known to have disappeared in 1988 alone. [Ibid. 11]
  2. the widespread use of chemical weapons, including mustard gas and the nerve agent GB, or sarin, against the town of Halabja as well as dozens of Kurdish villages, killing many thousands of people, mainly women and children;[ citation needed ]
  3. the wholesale destruction of some 2,000 villages, which are described in government documents as having been "burned", "destroyed", "demolished" and "purified", as well as at least a dozen larger towns and administrative centers (nahyas and qadhas);[ citation needed ] Since 1975, a total of 3,839 Kurdish villages have been destroyed by the former Iraqi regime. [40]
  4. Human Rights Watch/Middle East estimates that between 50,000 and 100,000 people were killed. [20] Some Kurdish sources put the number higher, estimating 182,000 Kurds were killed. [41]
  5. In 1989, army engineers destroyed the last major Kurdish town near the Iranian border. Qala Dizeh had a population of 70,000 before it was razed. Afterwards, the surrounding area was considered a "prohibited area". [42]


Frans van Anraat

In December 2005 a court in The Hague convicted Frans van Anraat of complicity in war crimes for his role in selling chemical weapons to the Iraqi government. He was given a 15-year sentence. [12] The court also ruled that the killing of thousands of Kurds in Iraq in the 1980s was indeed an act of genocide. [12] In the 1948 Genocide Convention, the definition of genocide is "acts committed with the intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnic, racial or religious group". The Dutch court said that it was considered "legally and convincingly proven that the Kurdish population meets the requirement under the Genocide Conventions as an ethnic group. The court has no other conclusion than that these attacks were committed with the intent to destroy the Kurdish population of Iraq".

Saddam Hussein

In an interview broadcast on Iraqi television on 6 September 2005, Iraqi President Jalal Talabani, a respected Kurdish politician, said that judges had directly extracted confessions from Saddam Hussein that he had ordered mass killings and other crimes during his regime and that he deserves to die. Two days later, Saddam's lawyer denied that he had confessed. [43]

Anfal trial

In June 2006, the Iraqi Special Tribunal announced that Saddam Hussein and six co-defendants would face trial on 21 August 2006, in relation to the Anfal campaign. [44] In December 2006, Saddam was put on trial for the genocide during Operation Anfal. The trial for the Anfal campaign was still underway on 30 December 2006, when Saddam Hussein was executed for his role in the unrelated Dujail Massacre. [45]

The Anfal trial recessed on 21 December 2006, and when it resumed on 8 January 2007, the remaining charges against Saddam Hussein were dropped. Six co-defendants continued to stand trial for their roles in the Anfal campaign. On 23 June 2007, Ali Hassan al-Majid, and two co-defendants, Sultan Hashem Ahmed and Hussein Rashid Mohammed, were convicted of genocide and related charges and sentenced to death by hanging. [14] Another two co-defendants (Farhan Jubouri and Saber Abdel Aziz al-Douri) were sentenced to life imprisonment, and one (Taher Tawfiq al-Ani) was acquitted on the prosecution's demand. [46]

Al-Majid was charged with war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide. He was convicted in June 2007, and was sentenced to death. His appeal of the death sentence was rejected on 4 September 2007, he was sentenced to death for the fourth time on 17 January 2010, and was hanged eight days later, on 25 January 2010. [47] Sultan Hashem Ahmed was not hanged due to opposition of the Iraqi President Jalal Talabani, who opposed the death penalty. [48]

Remembrance day

The Kurdistan Regional Government has set aside 14 April as a day of remembrance for the Al-Anfal campaign. [49]

International recognition

#NameDate of recognitionSource
1Flag of Norway.svg  Norway 21 November 2012 [50]
2Flag of Sweden.svg  Sweden 5 December 2012 [51] [52]
3Flag of the United Kingdom.svg  United Kingdom 1 March 2013 [53]
4Flag of South Korea.svg  South Korea 13 June 2013 [54]

On 5 December 2012, Sweden's parliament, the Riksdag, adopted a resolution by the Green Party to officially recognize Anfal as genocide. The resolution was passed by all 349 members of parliament. [55] [ disputed ] On 28 February 2013, the British House of Commons formally recognized the Anfal as genocide following a campaign led by Conservative MP Nadhim Zahawi, who is of Kurdish descent. [56]

See also

Related Research Articles

Human rights in Saddam Husseins Iraq

Iraq's era under President Saddam Hussein was notorious for its severe violations of human rights, which were perceived to be among the worst in the world. Secret police, state terrorism, torture, mass murder, genocide, ethnic cleansing, rape, deportations, extrajudicial killings, forced disappearances, assassinations, chemical warfare, and the destruction of southern Iraq's marshes were some of the methods Saddam and the country's Ba'athist government used to maintain control. The total number of deaths related to torture and murder during this period is unknown, but estimated to be around 250,000 according to Human Rights Watch, with the great majority of those occurring as a result of the 1988 Anfal genocide and the suppression of the 1991 uprisings in Iraq. Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International issued regular reports of widespread imprisonment and torture.

Ali Hassan al-Majid 20th and 21st-century former Baathist Iraqi Defense Minister and commander

Ali Hassan Abd al-Majid al-Tikriti was an Iraqi politician and military commander under Saddam Hussein who served as Defence Minister, Interior Minister, and chief of the Iraqi Intelligence Service. He was also the governor of Kuwait during much of the 1990-91 Gulf War.

The Halabja chemical attack, also known as the Halabja Massacre or Bloody Friday, was a massacre of Kurdish people that took place on 16 March 1988, during the closing days of the Iran–Iraq War in the Kurdish city of Halabja in Iraqi Kurdistan. The attack was part of the Al-Anfal Campaign in Kurdistan, as well as part of the Iraqi Army's attempt to repel the Iranian Operation Zafar 7. It took place 48 hours after the capture of the town by the Iranian Army. A United Nations (UN) medical investigation concluded that mustard gas was used in the attack, along with unidentified nerve agents.

Halabja City in Iraq

Halabja (Kurdish: ,Helebce هەڵەبجە‎) is a city in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq and the capital of Halabja Governorate, located about 240 km (150 mi) northeast of Baghdad and 14 km (9 mi) from the Iranian border.

The Iraqi High Tribunal (IHT), formerly the Iraqi Special Tribunal and sometimes referred to as the Supreme Iraqi Criminal Tribunal, is a body established under Iraqi national law to try Iraqi nationals or residents accused of genocide, crimes against humanity, war crimes or other serious crimes committed between 1968 and 2003. It organized the trial of Saddam Hussein and other members of his Ba'ath Party regime.

Frans Cornelis Adrianus van Anraat is a Dutch war criminal and a businessman. He sold raw materials for the production of chemical weapons to Iraq during the reign of Saddam Hussein. In December 2005, a court in The Hague convicted him of complicity in war crimes for his role in selling chemical weapons to Saddam's government. He was given a 15-year sentence. In 2007, the appeal court sentenced Van Anraat to 17 years in prison.

Kurdistan Region Autonomous region of Iraq

The Kurdistan Region is a country in Federal Iraq located mainly in northern Iraq comprising the four Kurdish-majority governorates of Dohuk, Erbil, Halabja and Sulaymaniyah and bordering Iran, Syria and Turkey. The Kurdistan Region encompasses most of Iraqi Kurdistan but excludes the disputed territories of Northern Iraq, contested between the Kurdistan Regional Government and the central Iraqi government in Baghdad since Kurdish autonomy was realized in 1992 in the aftermath of the Gulf War. The Kurdistan Region Parliament is situated in Erbil, but the constitution of the Kurdistan Region declares the disputed city of Kirkuk to be the capital of the Kurdistan Region. When the Iraqi Army withdrew from most of the disputed areas in mid-2014 because of the ISIL offensive in Northern Iraq, Kurdish Peshmerga entered the areas and held control there until Iraq retook the areas in October 2017.

Androcide Violence against men

Androcide refers to the systematic killing of men, boys, or males in general.

1991 uprisings in Iraq Anti-government uprisings in Baathist Iraq

The 1991 uprisings in Iraq were a series of popular rebellions in northern and southern Iraq in March and April 1991 during a ceasefire in the Gulf War. The mostly uncoordinated insurgency, often referred to as the Sha'aban Intifada among Shi'ite Arabs and as the National Uprising among Kurds, was fueled by the perception that Iraqi President Saddam Hussein had become vulnerable to regime change. This perception of weakness was largely the result of the outcome of two prior wars: the Iran–Iraq War and the Gulf War, both of which occurred within a single decade and devastated the population and economy of Iraq.

The Prevention of Genocide Act of 1988 was a United States Senate bill to punish Iraq for chemical weapons attacks on the Kurds at Halabja during the Iran–Iraq War. It was defeated after intense lobbying of Congress by the Reagan-Bush White House which then supported Iraq's Saddam Hussein as a counterbalance to post-revolutionary Iran.

Operation Zafar 7

Operation Zafar 7 was an Iranian offensive during the Iran–Iraq War. The Iranian military operation was successfully led by Lieutenant General Hossein Hassani-Saadi where Iran won the battle and also repelled the ensuing Iraqi counter-attack. However, Iran faced technical setbacks with massive economic and military sanctions in place against the country. As a result of those setbacks, Iran was unable to reach its objective of capturing Sulaymaniyah.

Wafiq al-Samarrai

Wafiq Ajeel Homood al-Samarrai وفيق عجيل حمود السامرائيّ is an Iraqi general formerly chief of Iraqi general military intelligence born in the region of Samarra.

Battle of Sulaymaniyah (1991)

The Battle ofSulaymaniyah was one of the biggest battles fought during the 1991 uprisings in Iraq. Sulaymaniyah, a mostly Kurdish city with a population of over 100,000, was the first Iraqi city to be captured by rebels and the last one to fall. The city was recaptured by Kurdish rebels, after the Peshmerga launched a new offensive on 20 July.

The destruction of Kurdish villages during the Iraqi Arabization campaign refers to villages razed by the Ba'athist Iraqi government during its "Arabization campaign" of areas, excluded from Kurdistan under the Iraqi–Kurdish Autonomy Agreement of 1970.

1983–1986 Kurdish rebellions in Iraq Kurdish rebellion against the Government of Saddam Hussein In Iraq

The 1983–1986 Kurdish rebellions in Iraq occurred during the Iran–Iraq War as PUK and KDP Kurdish militias of Iraqi Kurdistan rebelled against Saddam Hussein as part of the Iraqi–Kurdish conflict, in an attempt to form an independent state. With Iraqi government forces occupied by the Iran-Iraq War, Kurdish Peshmerga succeeded in taking control of some enclaves, with Iranian logistic and sometimes military support. The initial rebellion resulted in stalemate by 1985.

The Second Iraqi–Kurdish War was the second chapter of the Barzani rebellion, initiated by the collapse of the Kurdish autonomy talks and the consequent Iraqi offensive against rebel KDP troops of Mustafa Barzani during 1974–1975. The war came in the aftermath of the First Iraqi–Kurdish War (1961–1970), as the 1970 peace plan for Kurdish autonomy had failed to be implemented by 1974. Unlike the previous guerrilla campaign in 1961–1970, waged by Barzani, the 1974 war was a Kurdish attempt at symmetric warfare against the Iraqi Army, which eventually led to the quick collapse of the Kurds, who were lacking advanced and heavy weaponry. The war ended with the exile of the Iraqi KDP party and between 7,000–20,000 deaths from both sides combined.

Iraqi–Kurdish conflict

The Iraqi–Kurdish conflict consists of a series of wars and rebellions by the Kurds against the central authority of Iraq during the 20th century, which began shortly after the defeat of the Ottoman Empire in World War I and lasting until the U.S. invasion of Iraq in 2003. Some put the marking point of the conflict beginning to the attempt by Mahmud Barzanji to establish an independent Kingdom of Kurdistan, while others relate to the conflict as only the post-1961 insurrection by the Barzanis. The conflict lasted until the US invasion of Iraq in 2003, though tensions between the Kurdish autonomy and the central Iraqi government have continued.

The Ba'athist Arabization campaigns in North Iraq involved the forced displacement and cultural Arabization of minorities, in line with settler colonialist policies. Led by the Ba'athist government of Iraq from the 1960s to the early 2000s, the campaigns were intended to shift the demographics of North Iraq towards Arab domination. The Iraqi Ba'ath party, first under Ahmed Hassan al-Bakr and later Saddam Hussein, engaged in active expulsion of minorities from the mid-1970s onwards. In 1978 and 1979, 600 Kurdish villages were burned down and around 200,000 Kurds were sent to other parts of Iraq.

The persecution of the Feyli Kurds was a systematic persecution of Feylis by Saddam Hussein between 1970 and 2003. The persecution campaigns led to the expulsion, flight and effective exile of the Feyli Kurds from their ancestral lands in Iraq. The persecution began when a large number of Feyli Kurds were exposed to a big campaign by the regime that began by the dissolved RCCR issuance for 666 decision, which deprived Feyli Kurds of Iraqi nationality and considered them as Iranians. The systematic executions started in Baghdad and Khanaqin in 1979 and later spread to other Iraqi and Kurdish areas.


  1. 1 2 3 GENOCIDE IN IRAQ Human Rights Watch, 1993
  2. 1 2 3 4 5 The Crimes of Saddam Hussein – 1988 The Anfal Campaign PBS Frontline
  3. Fazil Moradi (2016) "The Force of Writing in Genocide: On Sexual Violence in the al-Anfāl Operations and Beyond." in Gender Violence in Peace and War: States of Complicity, 102-115, edited by Victoria Sanford, Katerina Stefatos and Cecilia Salvi. New Brunswick, NJ and London: Rutgers University Press.
  4. .Fazil Moradi (2017) "Genocide in Translation: On Memory, Justice, and Future Remembrance." in Memory and genocide: on what remains and the possibility of representation, edited by Fazil Moradi, Ralph Buchenhorst, and Maria Six-Hohenbalken London and New York: Routledge.
  5. Faraidoun Moradi, Mia Söderberg, Fazil Moradi, Bledar Daka, Anna-Carin Olin, Mona Lärstad. (2019) "Health Perspectives among Halabja’s Civilian Survivors of Sulfur Mustard Exposure with Respiratory Symptoms—A Qualitative Study" PLOS ONE 1-16.
  6. "Anfal Genocide: activists say Kurdish perpetrators remain at large". RUDWAW. 14 April 2017.
  7. "British Parliament officially recognizes 'Kurdish Genocide'". Hurriyet Daily News. 1 March 2013. Archived from the original on 4 March 2013. Retrieved 31 August 2013.
  8. Jonathan C. Randal, After Such Knowledge, What Forgiveness?: My Encounters with Kurdistan, 356 pp., Westview Press, 1998, ISBN   0-8133-3580-9, p.231
  9. Hardi, Choman (2011). Gendered Experiences of Genocide: Anfal Survivors in Kurdistan-Iraq . Ahgate. pp.  17. ISBN   978-0754677154.
  10. Iraq: 'Disappearances' – the agony continues Archived 27 October 2007 at the Wayback Machine Amnesty International
  11. Certrez, Donabed, and Makko (2012). The Assyrian Heritage: Threads of Continuity and Influence. Uppsala University. p. 288. ISBN   978-91-554-8303-6.CS1 maint: uses authors parameter (link)
  12. 1 2 3 Killing of Iraq Kurds 'genocide' BBC News, 23 December 2005
  13. Whatever Happened To The Iraqi Kurds? Human Rights Watch Report, 1991
  14. 1 2 Omar Sinan (25 June 2007). "Iraq to hang 'Chemical Ali'". Tampa Bay Times. Associated Press. Archived from the original on 17 October 2015. Retrieved 3 December 2015.
  15. Pear, Robert (15 September 1988). "U.S. Says It Monitored Iraqi Messages on Gas". The New York Times. Archived from the original on 18 September 2009. Retrieved 13 April 2017.
  16. "Whatever Happened To The Iraqi Kurds?". Human Rights Watch. 10 March 1991. Archived from the original on 12 April 2017. Retrieved 13 April 2017.
  17. Harris, Shane. "Exclusive: CIA Files Prove America Helped Saddam as He Gassed Iran". Foreign Policy. Retrieved 13 April 2017.
  18. 1 2 Hardi, Choman (2011). Gendered Experiences of Genocide: Anfal Survivors in Kurdistan-Iraq . Ahgate. pp.  16–17. ISBN   978-0754677154.
  19. "TRIAL : Profiles". Archived from the original on 8 April 2016. Retrieved 31 August 2013.
  20. 1 2 "Iraqi Anfal". Human Rights Watch. 1993. Retrieved 31 August 2013.
  21. Nation Building in Kurdistan: Memory, Genocide and Human Rights
  22. 1 2 Hardi, Choman (2011). Gendered Experiences of Genocide: Anfal Survivors in Kurdistan-Iraq . Ahgate. pp.  19. ISBN   978-0754677154.
  23. "BBC ON THIS DAY | 16 | 1988: Thousands die in Halabja gas attack". BBC News. Retrieved 28 August 2013.
  24. "Halabja, the massacre the West tried to ignore". Archived from the original on 23 January 2010. Retrieved 28 August 2013.
  25. Nation Building in Kurdistan: Memory, Genocide and Human Rights
  26. Hardi, Choman (2011). Gendered Experiences of Genocide: Anfal Survivors in Kurdistan-Iraq . Ahgate. pp.  19–20. ISBN   978-0754677154.
  27. Hardi, Choman (2011). Gendered Experiences of Genocide: Anfal Survivors in Kurdistan-Iraq . Ahgate. pp.  20. ISBN   978-0754677154.
  28. Committee, Human Rights Watch Middle East Watch; Staff, Middle East Watch; Black, George; Watch (Organization), Middle East (1993). Genocide in Iraq: The Anfal Campaign Against the Kurds. Human Rights Watch. pp. 171–172. ISBN   9781564321084.
  29. Committee, Human Rights Watch Middle East Watch; Staff, Middle East Watch; Black, George; Watch (Organization), Middle East (1993). Genocide in Iraq: The Anfal Campaign Against the Kurds. Human Rights Watch. pp. 172–176. ISBN   9781564321084.
  30. 1 2 Hardi, Choman (2011). Gendered Experiences of Genocide: Anfal Survivors in Kurdistan-Iraq . Ahgate. pp.  21. ISBN   978-0754677154.
  31. Hardi, Choman (2011). Gendered Experiences of Genocide: Anfal Survivors in Kurdistan-Iraq . Ahgate. pp.  21–22. ISBN   978-0754677154.
  32. 1 2 3 4 5 6 Watch, Human Rights; East, Human Rights Watch/Middle (1995). Iraq's Crime of Genocide. ISBN   0300064276.
  33. Mass grave unearthed in Iraq CNN, 13 October 2004
  34. Middle East Watch. Genocide in Iraq, the Anfal Campaign Against the Kurds, Human Rights Watch, 1993, p. 36
  35. Hardi, Choman (2011). Gendered Experiences of Genocide: Anfal Survivors in Kurdistan-Iraq . Ahgate. pp.  20. ISBN   978-0754677154.
  36. Hardi, Choman (2011). Gendered Experiences of Genocide: Anfal Survivors in Kurdistan-Iraq . Ahgate. pp.  22. ISBN   978-0754677154.
  37. Michael Rubin, Are Kurds a pariah minority? Archived 13 June 2008 at the Wayback Machine Social Research, Spring, 2003.
  38. "List of the churches been demolished by Saddam Hussein's regime" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 23 March 2017. Retrieved 31 August 2013.
  39. Certrez, Donabed, and Makko (2012). The Assyrian Heritage: Threads of Continuity and Influence. Uppsala University. p. 289. ISBN   978-91-554-8303-6.CS1 maint: uses authors parameter (link)
  40. "Genocide in Iraq - The Anfal Campaign Against the Kurds". Human Rights Watch. Retrieved 10 November 2019.
  41. "Ethnic Cleansing and the Kurds". 15 May 2005. Archived from the original on 2 December 2008. Retrieved 31 August 2013.
  42. MONTGOMERY, BRUCE P. "The Iraqi Secret Police Files: A Documentary Record of the Anfal Genocide". Archivaria: 97.
  43. Lawyer denies Saddam confession BBC News, 8 September 2005
  44. Iraqi High Tribunal announces second Saddam trial to open Associated Press, 27 June 2006
  45. Dictator Who Ruled Iraq With Violence Is Hanged for Crimes Against Humanity The New York Times, 30 December 2006
  46. 'Chemical Ali' sentenced to hang CNN, 24 June 2007
  47. "Saddam Hussein's henchman 'Chemical Ali' executed". 25 January 2010. Retrieved 31 August 2013.
  48. "Iraqi president opposes minister's hanging". The Irish Times. Retrieved 17 March 2020.
  49. "Anfal campaign receives national day of remembrance". Archived from the original on 7 January 2019. Retrieved 21 July 2018.
  50. "Norwegian Government recognises Saddam Hussein's genocide – Justice4Genocide calls on the British Government to do the same". 21 November 2012. Archived from the original on 9 October 2016. Retrieved 26 April 2015.
  51. "Is Swedish neutrality over?". 11 December 2012. Retrieved 24 April 2019.
  52. "Swedish Parliament recognises Saddam Hussein's genocide – Justice4Genocide calls on Britain to do the same". 14 December 2012. Archived from the original on 11 June 2017. Retrieved 26 April 2015.
  53. "British parliament unanimously recognises Kurdish genocide". 1 March 2013. Archived from the original on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 26 April 2015.
  54. "South Korea recognizes Kurdish genocide". 13 June 2013. Archived from the original on 26 April 2015. Retrieved 26 April 2015.
  55. "Is Swedish neutrality over?". Pravda. 11 December 2012. Retrieved 24 April 2019.
  56. "Historic Debate Secures Parliamentary Recognition of the Kurdish Genocide". Retrieved 31 August 2013.

36. ^Documenting the Kurdish Genocide – 31 January 2014