Iraqi government hasn’t compensated Anfal families yet
As the 26h anniversary of the Anfal Operation was commemorated all across Kurdistan Region, a member of the Iraqi Council of Representatives says the Iraqi government has failed to compensate the families of the victims yet.
In Chamchamal, the anniversary of Anfal was commemorated by the local administration with the authority from the Ministry of Martyrs and Anfal of the Kurdistan Regional Government.
Foad Osman, official spokesperson of the Ministry, said that this ceremony is a national ceremony and everybody has to commemorate this day and pay tribute to the victims of Anfal.
“This year the Ministry gave the authority to the local administrations to make the arrangements for the commemoration of this day.”
Anfal was an operation lead by the Baathist Regime of Saddam Hussein aimed at the genocide of the Kurds.
The process started on April 14, 1988, and ended by taking around 183 thousands of Kurds and bury them alive.
Following the collapse of the Baathist Regime, most of those who were involved in the operation were put on trial and the Iraqi Parliament recognized the case as genocide.
Azad Sreshmayee, member of the Iraqi Parliament on the Kurdistani Alliance Bloc, argues that the current government of Iraq, which is a replacement of the old one, has to compensate the families of the Anfal victims, but the Iraqi government has not yet done that.
“Kurdistan Regional Government has drafted a law and has handed it over to the Iraqi government, and asked for US$ 383 million to compensate the Kurdish people in general, and the victims in particular,” MP Sreshmayee told a local Kurdish daily newspaper. “The Higher Criminal Court has made its decision that this was a genocide and the Parliament also recognized it, but more has to be done about that.”
The Kurdish MP also added that the Kurdish and Iraqi governments have to try to make this case a global issue. “Some steps have been taken and some world parliaments have recognized Anfal as genocide against the Kurds, but a lot more has to be done in this regard," concluded the PM Azad Sershmayee.
The word Anfal is a Quran terminology with an Arabic root, meaning (achievement, yield), but according to atheists the term is all the belongings, animals, wealth and tools that Muslims take from their enemies after the wars.
The Anfal Operations of the Baathist Regime in the Southern Kurdistan went on in 8 consecutive phases. Eight military units supported by more than 600 airplanes and 1500 helicopters from the air force were involved in the operation. The role of the Kurds 24 military detachments with 1154 Kurds from Erbil, 5 detachments with 177 Kurds from Duhok and 26 detachments with 496 Kurds from Suleimaniya were involved in the implementation of the operation.
Additionally a number of Kurdish men supported the operation acting as guides. They were a total of 250 thousand people within 300-362 regiments under the name of National Defense Forces.
The start of the operation
The operation started in February 23, 1988 in 8 stages and in 6 different areas of Kurdistan. First stage was between February 23 till March 18th in Doli Jafayati; second stage was from March 22 till April 1st in Qaradagh area; third stage was from April 7th till April 20th in Garmain area; forth stage was from May 3rd till May 15th in Qalasewka and Smaller Zab area; fifth, sixth and seventh stages were from May 15th till august 26th in Shaqlawa and Rawanduz; and the eighth stage was from August 26th till September 6th.
With the end of the eighth stage and the destruction of almost all the villages in Kurdistan the official end of the operation was announced.
The damages caused by Anfal
Almost 90% of the Region’s villages and more than 20 towns and cities were eradicated from the map. Around 15 million mines were planted in the rural areas. Roughly 1.5 million Kurds were relocated into forceful camps. Approximaltey 10% of the Kurdish population were wiped out. In total around 7,729 sqm of Kurdistan Region faced the Anfal Operation.
One of the most inhumane aspects of Anfal was that the Baathist regime was selling the Anfaled Kurdish girls and women to other Arab countries. In many occasions Arab men entered into the jails and camps in groups and chose the beautiful girls and took them. In addition to selling these girls to the tribes, the Baathists started to force them to work in night clubs in cities in the Arab countries. According to document number 1606 of 1989, which is marked as “Confidential and top Urgent”, the Kirkuk Province Intelligence Directorate informs the Directorate General of Intelligence on December 10, 1989 that based on a request from Egypt, they are sending 18 Anfaled Kurdish girls to that country.