Kurdish spiritual leader Ezzeddin Hosseini has said he's prepared to negotiate with the Iranian government on the basis of autonomy for the Kurds.
GV PAN Kurdistan Terrain
GV Guerrilla camp on hillside (2 shots)
CU Makeshifts flag flying above Kurdish village, general village scenes (6 shots)
CU Flag ZOOM OUT TO Guerrillas firing in practise (3 shots)
SV Interview with Kurdish Chief Ezeddin Hosseini speaking in Farsi
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Background: Kurdish spiritual leader Ezzeddin Hosseini has said he's prepared to negotiate with the Iranian government on the basis of autonomy for the Kurds. The offer came as Kurdish guerrillas were reported to be preparing to converge on the Kurdistan capital, Samandaj where three people were shot dead during demonstrations on Thursday (18 October).
SYNOPSIS: The Guerrillas are demanding full autonomy for Kurdistan and for the past two months have been engaged in fierce battles with government troops trying to put down the rebellion. The rebels took to the hills last month after government forces captured strongholds of the banned Kurdish Democratic Party in several towns, including Mahabad, Sardasht and Baneh. However, the guerrillas still control many roads in the region.
Guerrilla attacks on government positions are reported to have increased over the past few weeks. On the seventh of October a column of Revolutionary guards was ambushed. Twenty two guards were killed, another fifty were captured. Guerrilla losses have also been heavy...65 since the weekend.. in other battles many have been captured and later executed. It was a demonstration over executions which lead to the shooting of three people in Samandaj on Thursday (18 October) Although Revolutionary Guards were said to have fired into the air to break up the demonstration it's not clear who was responsible for the killings.
Ayatollah Khomeini has now called a halt to executions by Iran's Islamic Court. It follows widespread criticism that officials have been abusing their powers. A special investigator in Kurdistan has charged that pro-government forces were responsible for the massacre of 45 Kurdish Villagers last month. Despite the bloodshed, peace moves are underway. Iran's Provincial Affairs Dariush Forouhar has been sent to Kurdistan to try to arrange a meeting with the revels and the Kurds themselves have made it clear they're willing to negotiate.
Kurdish Spiritual Leader Ezzeddin Hosseini has welcomed the government's peace initiative. He's said he's prepared to negotiate on the basis of autonomy for the Kurds.
Sheikh Ezzeddin claimed the government had decided to make peace because it had underestimated the strength of feeling in Kurdistan.