First joint Forum UoS-SPU Universities Saulaimani

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Opening speech

© UoS
Dr. Yousif Goran, KRG Minister for Higher Education and Scientific Research MHE


Kirkuk from the perspective of the Kurds

The question of Kirkuk contains several political and also symbolic and national aspects. From the historical point of view this question dates back to the beginnings of the foundation of the Iraqi state in the past century at a time when the Arab nationalism was on the upswing. At the middle of the past century (both) the Arabization and the erasure of the Kurdish identity (of Kirkuk) had begun. Sunni Arabs had raised this idea. Therefore, it is not possible to talk about the Kirkuk question without mentioning the problem of the Arabization.   

Thus, a political solution of this (Kirkuk) question has to start from the point of view of the Kurds with the rescission of the Arabization and its ramifications. Consecutively, an applicable mechanism should be implemented based on the factual real demographic data of the different nationalities. This mechanism can be realized according to Article 140 of the (2005) Iraqi constitution. Or, another solution can be found where on the one hand the Kurdish identity of the town will be acknowledged and on the other the rights of all other nationalities recognized. Against this background it should be possible to find different mechanisms for a common administration for the town and province of Kirkuk.  

Dr. Yousif Goran
KRG Minister for Higher Education and Scientific Research MHE

Translation: Abdol Hamid Hosseini MA and Dr. Ferdinand Hennerbichler

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