Information on the conflict between Kurdish factions and on whether average party members have problems [IRQ27440.E]

General information on this subject is available in the attached documents.

The following information was provided during a 19 August 1997 telephone interview with the director of Kurdish Human Rights Watch (KHRW) in Fairfax, Virginia, an organization that monitors human rights abuses in the Kurdish areas and assists Kurdish refugee claimants in the United States. The information provided by the source comes from Kurdish refugee claimants in the USA and from independent reports from northern Iraq.

The source stated that non-militant Kurds living in cities under the control of one of the Kurdish factions would face difficulties if they choose to remain neutral or refused a request to take out membership. Refusal to join would raise the suspicion of the faction that controls the city and could affect their employment status, education and freedom of movement.

This Response was prepared after researching publicly accessible information currently available to the DIRB within time constraints. This Response is not, and does not purport to be, conclusive as to the merit of any particular claim to refugee status or asylum.


Kurdish Human Rights Watch (KHRW), Fairfax, Virginia. 19 August 1997. Telephone interview.


Agence France Presse (AFP). 15 November 1996. "In Additon to the Two Kurdish Groups, the United States and Turkey, Britain." (NEXIS)

_____. 25 October 1996. "Ceasefire in Northern Iraq Holding: UN" (NEXIS)

_____. 31 August 1996. "UN Officials in Arbil Said the Outskirts of the City had been Hit." (NEXIS)

The Associated Press (AP). 15 October 1996. AM Cycle. Waiel Faleh. "Kurdish Rebels Claim Advance on Irbil." (NEXIS)

_____. 1 September 1996. Waiel Faleh. "Iraqi Army Promises to Withdraw; More Clashes Reported." (NEXIS)

Deutsche Presse-Agentur. 15 January 1997. BC Cycle. "Iraqi Kurds Agree on the Ceasefire Line as Demarcation Line." (NEXIS)

_____. 22 October 1996. "Rival Kurdish Forces Ready to Sign Ceasefire, U.S. Officials Says Eds Updating, Adding Quotes from Pelletreau." (NEXIS)

IRNA [Tehran, in Persian]. 28 December 1996. "KDP Reportedly Accuses Rival PUK of Cease-Fire Violation." (BBC Summary 30 Dec. 1996/Nexis)

Mideast Mirror [London]. 18 November 1996. "Kurdish Talks May Broaden to Include Amman-Based Iraqi Opposition Group." (NEXIS)

Reuters. 4 April 1997. BC Cycle. "Kurdish Rival Groups Agree to Resume Peace Talks." (NEXIS)

_____. 17 January 1997. BC Cycle. "Iraqi Kurd Leader Asks Turkey to Help Aid Groups." (NEXIS)

_____. 16 January 1997. BC Cycle. "Turkey Seeks Iraqi Kurd Support Against Rebels." (NEXIS)

_____. 18 October 1996. BC Cycle. Osman Senkul. "Iraqi Kurds Take Town from Rival Group." (NEXIS)

_____. 18 October 1996. "Reuters Middle East Highlights." (NEXIS)

TRT TV [Ankara, in Turkish]. 31 October 1996. "Agreement Reached at Ankara Talks on Cease-Fire, Political Conciliation in Northern Iraq." (BBC Summary 2 Nov. 1996/NEXIS)

Xinhua News Agency (XNA). 1 November 1996. "Iraqi Kurdish Peace Deal Hailed." (NEXIS)

_____. 30 October 1996. "Iraqi Kurdish Factions Start Talks in Turkey." (NEXIS)

_____. 28 October 1996. "Kurdish Faction in Iraq Welcomes Iran's Mediation." (NEXIS)