A Humans Rights Organisation in Iran accused on Saturday (20 October) the Iranian authorities of torturing suspects, carrying out executions after summary trials and holding fifteen hundred prisoners in the country's jails.
A Humans Rights Organisation in Iran accused on Saturday (20 October) the Iranian authorities of torturing suspects, carrying out executions after summary trials and holding fifteen hundred prisoners in the country's jails. The Kurds are one group with which the Iranian authorities have been in conflict. On Friday (19 October), three people were killed in the Kurdish capital of Sanandaj, during a demonstration marking the fortieth day of mourning for executed Kurds. They are fighting for a measure of autonomy within the Iran, and although bloodshed continues, peace moves are underway. Iran's provincial Affairs Minister, Dariush Farouhar has been sent to begin negotiations with leaders of the Kurdish Democratic Party.
SYNOPSIS: In one of the Kurdish hill camps in north-west Iran guards are constantly on patrol against attack from the forces of the Iranian government.
The Kurds, a people with a three-thousand year old culture, live in Kurdistan, which now lies in five different independent countries; mainly Iran, Turkey, Iraq, Syria and the Soviet Union.
Kurdish leader Mr. Jalaj Talebani from Iraq is reported to be involved in the first stages of peace negotiations between the Kurds and the Iranian government.
On most maps, the geographical region known as Kurdistan stretches from southeast Turkey across the northern most areas of Iraq into Iran's mid-western region. But Kurdish sources claim that Kurdistan actually stretches from the Taurus mountains in Turkey to Soviet Armenia, and from Mount Arafat in Saudia Arabia to the Syrian-Iraqi borders. This takes in an area as large as France and claims a total Kurdish population of between seven and sixteen million.
Kurdish nationalism felt encouraged by the Iranian revolution. Kurdish militants who played their part in the Shah's downfall, later expected encouragement for their ambitions, but instead they have been charged in revolutionary courts with threatening the revolution.
On October 13 violence flared in the garrison town of Mahabad, which was under the control of Revolutionary Guards. Kurdish guerrillas attacked the police department building, killing the police chief and wounding three others.
More violence erupted the following night hen Kurds attacked the Guards barracks withe rockets and machine guns. Recent reports (October 20) said that, in the war which has swayed between the Kurds and Revolutionary Guards, Mahabad had again been taken over by the Kurds.