- Kurdistan Democratic Party of Iraq
party_name = Kurdistan Democratic Party
Partiya Demokrata Kurdistanê
پارتیا دەمۆکراتا کوردستانێ
الحزب الديمقراطي الكردستاني
colorcode = yellow
16 august, 1946
Social Democracy(party charter: Democratic Socialism)
website = [http://www.kdp.pp.se/ www.kdp.pp.se] The Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) ( _ku. Partîya Demokrata Kurdistan (PDK)) was founded by
Mustafa Barzani, Kurdish nationalist who fought numerous revolts against Baghdadwith success. The party was established in Eastern Kurdistanin 1946 upon the creation of a Kurdistan Republic of Mahabad, which lasted for less than a year. On 16 August 1946, a congress was formed in which the formation of the KDP was announced  . In this congress the KDP stated the political and economic situation of the Kurds in Iraq were different from that of Iran. It demanded autonomy for the Kurds of Iraq. Mulla Mustafa Barzani was elected as the president of the party, Kaka Ziadand Sheikh Latifwere appointed as vice presidents. Hamza Abdullah was elected its Secretary-General.
Rebelling against the
Iraqi government in the aftermath of the first Gulf War, the KDP became perhaps the single most influential Iraqi anti-Saddam group. Its peshmerga, or militia fighters, were able to operate with relative impunity in the no-fly zone of northern Iraq.
The KDP has jointly administered
Iraqi Kurdistan(which the Kurds call the free Kurdistan, because of its semi-independent status). The KDP became the leading party in the Kurdistan Regional Government in Erbil. The other main Iraqi Kurdish party, the leftist Patriotic Union of Kurdistan, split with the KDP and established a "de facto" government of their own in the city of Suleymaniya.
In May 1994 supporters of the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) clashed with supporters of the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP), leaving 300 people dead. Relations among the groups soured in March 1995 when the KDP backed out of an attack on Saddam's front lines led by Iraqi National Congress. Over the next year the PUK and KDP fought several more times, eventually devolving into a state of civil war. In August 1996, leaders of the KDP asked the former Iraqi president Saddam Hussein to intervene in the war. Hussein sent at least 30,000 troops into the UN-protected Kurdish region, capturing the PUK stronghold of Irbil. The KDP was immediately installed in power. Fact|date=October 2008 The U.S. responded with two missile strikes against southern Iraq, but in early September Iraq again helped KDP fighters, this time taking the PUK stronghold of As Sulaymaniyah. After Saddam's move against them in 1996, about 700 Iraqi National Congress activists and fighters were evacuated to the US, along with 6,000 pro-Western Iraqi Kurds.
The fighting left over a thousand persons dead and forced thousands of civilians from their homes. A ceasefire established on 24 November 1997 ended the fighting for the remainder of the year, albeit with a few sporadic clashes. [cite web | url = http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/world/para/kdp.htm/ | title = KDP's profile on GlobalSecurity.org]
Both Kurdish groups fought alongside the
Coalition of the Willingto topple Hussein's regime in 2003. More recently, the KDP and PUK have united to form a joint list, the Democratic Patriotic Alliance of Kurdistan, under which it contested the 2005 Iraqi elections. This was followed by the decision in May 2006, to form an alliance with the PUK and run Irbilas a unified party. [http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/middle_east/4982546.stm]
The party has alliances in other parts of the Middle East as well such as the KDPI (KDP-Iran, which actually functions independently from the KDP), in
Syria(al-Party), in Turkey (PDK-Bakur) and even in Lebanon.
The KDP, alongside with the PUK, has had a number of members criticized for personally using a large amount of money and property that was set aside for government purposes.Fact|date=October 2007
An article written by a Kurdish Austrian citizen caused a state of panic within the classes of the party, talking about the past of
Mustafa Barzani, claiming he was a KGBagent, and accusing the KDP of corruption and crime. The KDP jailed the writer once he visited Kurdish Iraq. [cite web | url = http://www.voanews.com/uspolicy/archive/2006-01/2006-01-06-voa2.cfm | title = K-D-P Critic Jailed In Iraq ]
May 13, 2007, a car bomber drove into the local offices of the KDP in the city of Makhmur in Northern Iraq, killing at least 50 people and wounding at least 70. The attack was thought to come in response to an oil-sharing deal that gave Kurds a substantial amount of the oil revenue of the country. [ [http://english.aljazeera.net/NR/exeres/1CAEA4FC-9B1A-4272-8FFC-C5AA976BF9ED.htm Car bomb kills 50 in northern Iraq] " Al-Jazeera", May 13th, 2007.] The KDP has renounced all violence and was working for a peaceful future for the Kurds.
democratic socialismfor the definition of the KDP's political ideology, and socialist internationalthe organization the KDP is affiliated with.
* [http://kdp.nu/ Official site]
* [http://cns.miis.edu/research/iraq/nactors.htm The Iraqi Actors in the North of Iraq]
* [http://www.palgrave.com/products/Catalogue.aspx?is=033377535X Kurdish Predicament in Iraq]
* [http://www.kurdmania.com German-kurdish homepage for politics and culture]
* [http://www.antiwar.com/orig/qadir.php?articleid=9629 The Kurds and the KGB - The secret history of the Barzani dynasty] by Dr. Kamal Said Qadir,
AntiWar.com, August 31, 2006
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