Kurdistan Peshmerga Forces Day

On December 17, 1945, the PDKI overtook the last Iranian military barrack in Mahabad and raised the Kurdish flag. The Peshmerga Forces of Kurdistan was officially founded on the same day.

Since then, and every year on December 17, the people in eastern (Iranian) Kurdistan honor the sacrifices of the Peshmerga Forces of Kurdistan. The growing Kurdish diaspora in Europe and America do the same as well. The diaspora honor the bravery and sacrifices of Kurdistan’s Peshmerga Forces by organizing various events.

Peshmerga has a broader meaning and significance in Kurdish society than a military force.

Peshmerga is a symbol of the resilience of a nation that has been deprived the right to statehood in its own homeland and forcefully incorporated into four states – Iran, Iraq, Turkey, and Syria – since the beginning of the 20th century.

The Kurdish nation has been subject to forced assimilation, massacres and cultural and physical genocide by these four states. Still, the Kurdish people have managed to survive and protect its dignity. This is very much thanks to Peshmerga.

Peshmerga is the protector of the human dignity of the Kurdish nation. Peshmerga is also a progressive military force fighting for liberty, gender equality and democracy in the Middle East and, as evidenced in the war against the Islamic Republic of Iran and the Islamic State (IS), the most important force fighting state terrorism and the terrorism of non-state actors.

PDKI’s Peshmerga Forces have been fighting dictatorship in Iran and have struggled for the national rights of the Kurdish people, liberty and democracy since the 1940s. PDKI’s Peshmerga Forces bravely fought the dark forces of the Islamic Republic of Iran from 1979 until 1996.

Since 2015, PDKI’s Peshmerga Forces have returned to eastern Kurdistan and in the summer of this year, clashes erupted between Peshmerga and Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards. PDKI’s Peshmerga Forces also took part, alongside the Peshmerga Forces of southern (Iraqi) Kurdistan, in the war against IS in 2014 and are involved in the operation to liberate Mosul.

Since having returned to eastern Kurdistan in 2015, PDKI’s Peshmerga Forces have pledged to make the necessary sacrifices in liberating the Kurdish nation and in fighting the Islamic Republic of Iran.

The Peshmerga Forces Day serves to emphasize the need for further sacrifices in the pursuit of the Kurdish nation’s liberation, but also to remind us of the imperative of unity among the Kurdish nation.

PDKI’s motto, as always, is that continuing the struggle for national rights, liberty, gender equality and democracy is the best tribute to the sacrifices of the many thousands of brave Peshmergas who have sacrificed their lives.

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