For Iraq’s Long-Suffering Kurds, Independence Beckons

9 Sep 2017   Iraq

Men bought and sold prayer beads last month in front of the citadel in Erbil, a Unesco World Heritage site, in the Iraqi Kurdistan region. BARZAN, Iraq — A pair of rusted eyeglasses, a grimy antique watch, torn bank notes and old identification cards. These simple items on display at a museum here in northern Iraq, dug from a mass grave of Kurdish tribesmen massacred by Saddam Hussein’s henchmen, help explain why there is little doubt about how Kurds will vote in a referendum this month on independence from Iraq. “How could the international community expect us to be part of Iraq after these crimes?” said Khalat Barzani, who is in charge of the museum that memorializes the deportation and killings of thousands of Kurds in 1983. Unmarked grave stones dot the hillside near the town of Barzan, Iraq, at a commemorative cemetery for members of the Barzani clan […]

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