Minorities in the Middle East: Kurdish Communities 1918–1974

  (13) 978-1-84097-160-6   Extent:  4 volumes, 2,000 pages
Editor: B. Destani    Published: 2006
Paper: Printed on acid free paper
Binding: Library bindings with gilt finish
See sample pages: not available

These volumes of original despatches, correspondence and reports record aspects of the Kurdish situation starting from the period following the First World War.
Although the Kurdish peoples are numerous, their aspirations for unity and independence have been repressed by the dominant regimes in the region, effectively minoritising the Kurds within a group of established states. Since the end of the First World War the former Ottoman Kurdistan has been administered by five sovereign states: Turkey, Iran, Iraq, Syria, and the former Soviet Union. In 1918 Kurdish hopes for an independent Kurdistan provided for by the Treaty of Sèvres (1920) were quashed by the constitution of modern Turkey, founded by Mustafa Kemal (Ataturk), and by the division of Kurdistan between Turkey, Syria and Iraq by the French and British, formalised in the Treaty of Lausanne in 1923.


Volume 1: 1918–1930
Volume 2: 1931–1940
Volume 3: 1941–1967
Volume 4: 1968–1974


Among hundreds of documents, the following topics are included
Volume 1: 1918–1930
  • the aspirations of the Kurds before the Paris Peace Conference of 1919
  • the grievances, petitions and agitations of the Kurds when the Iraqi Government fails to deliver the pledges given by the League of Nations in 1926
  • the riots and Kurdish uprisings in Hakkari and Sulaimani
  • the Kurdish policy of the Iraqi Government and the Kurdish demands for a Kurdish state under a British Mandate
Volume 2: 1931–1940
  • reports the divergence of views between the British and Iraqi Governments on the Kurdish petitions
  • reports on the Local Languages Law, schools and education
  • describes the personalities and factions of the Kurdish tribes, the arrest of Taufiq Wahbi Beg and the treatment of Kurds in Iraq
  • reports on the Kurdish resentment of Arab rule and the beginning of Kurdish nationalisM
Volume 3: 1941–1967
  • reports on the military and political position in Iranian Kurdistan in 1941
  • comments on the Turkish attitude to the Kurdish question
  • reports the situation along the Iran–Iraq border during World War II, including Russian, German and Turkish involvement in the region, and raids by the Kurds on the Iranian–Turkish frontier
  • describes the post-War Kurdish situation in Syria, Russia, Iraq and Azerbaijani Kurdistan
  • records the beginnings of Kurdish broadcasting in Iran, Iraq, Azerbaijan and Russia
  • reports the birth of the Kurdish Democratic Party in 1961 led by Mulla Mustafa Barzani
  • documents the deterioration of relations between the Kurds and the Iraqi Government in 1965, leading to the deployment of Iraqi troops
  • describes the Kurdish counter offensive and the supply of aid to the Kurds from Iran
Volume 4: 1968–1974
  • reports the position of Kurds in Syria
  • describes the British attitude to the Kurdish rebellion in a document entitled ‘Kurdistan: Iraq and Iran’
  • reports the 1970 Agreement between the Kurds and the Iraqi Government
  • records the resumption of hostilities in 1973 between the Ba’ath Party and the Kurds
  • reveals the plans in 1974 for Kurdish Autonomy
  • records activities of the Iraqi Front Delegation, Kurdish dissidents in London and Kurdish Red Crescent Society
  • includes British Government reviews of the Kurdish situation written in 1979, 1983 and 1992