Lahur Sheikh Jangi, the Co-Leader of the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK), issued on Wednesday, a statement on the occasion of the anniversary of the Anfal crimes that targeted the people of Kurdistan.
The text of the statement said:
On the anniversary of the Anfal genocide committed by the Ba'ath regime against our people, we commemorate the loss of our loved ones who were buried alive in the slaughters of this crime, whose graves have not yet all been exhumed, and the bodies of the victims have not all been returned. The patience of the families and individuals of Anfal have changed tears to hope and they have changed the genocide of a nation to a stronger identity and a brighter future. In addition to their patience, it is the duty of all to work to eliminate the remnants of Anfal. We must put our efforts forth to have the Anfal campaigns be recognized internationally, for the Iraqi government to compensate the families of Anfal, and for the relevant authorities in the Kurdistan Regional Government to provide the most services to their areas.
Lahur Sheikh Jangi Talabani
Co-Leader of the PUK
History of the Anfal campaign
The Anfal Campaign, also known as the Kurdish Genocide, Operation Anfal or simply Anfal, was a genocidal campaign against the Kurdish people (and other non-Arab populations) in northern Iraq, led by the fallen Ba'athist Iraqi President Saddam Hussein and headed by Ali Hassan al-Majid or Chemical Ali (who executed the Halabja chemical attack) in the final stages of Iran-Iraq War. The campaign takes its name from Surat al-Anfal in the Qur'an, which was used as a code name by the former Iraqi Baathist government for a series of systematic attacks against the Kurdish population of northern Iraq, conducted between 1986 and 1989 and culminating in 1988. The campaign also targeted other minority communities in Iraq including Assyrians, Shabaks, Iraqi Turkmens, Yazidis, Jews, Mandeans, and many villages belonging to these ethnic groups were also destroyed.
Sweden, Norway, and the United Kingdom officially recognize the Anfal campaign as genocide. On December 5, 2012, Swedish parliament Riksdag adopted a resolution by the Green party to officially recognize Anfal as genocide. The resolution was passed by all 349 members of parliament. On February 28, 2013, the British House of Commons formally recognized the Anfal as genocide following a campaign led by Conservative MP Nadhim Zahawi.
The Anfal campaign carried out by the dictatorial regime of Saddam Hussein against the Kurdish civilian population began on February 22, 1988, and continued until September 6 of the same year, and is considered one of the most dangerous pages of government mass killing in the history of Baathist rule in Iraq. The army and regular forces directly, including (the First Corps, which was based in Kirkuk, the Fifth Corps, which was based in Erbil), the Air Force, the Special Forces, the Republican Guard, the Commando Forces, the security and intelligence services, military intelligence, the chemical and biological weapons departments, in addition to all service departments that have been put in the service of carrying out these operations.