Russia promotes unified Kurdish platform
By M.K. BHADRAKUMAR
A new organization was founded in Moscow on Saturday known as the International Federation of Kurdish Communities. It is a significant development against the backdrop of the surge of the Kurdish problem. Kurds inhabit several countries in a wide arc from Turkey across the northern tier of the Middle East to the Caucasus and Central Asia.
The new organization is headed by Mirzoyev Knyaz Ibragimovich, a distinguished Kazakh
intellectual of Armenian Kurdish origin – author, philologist-
A Russian Foreign Ministry press release said that they discussed “pressing issues in the Middle East with an emphasis on the Kurdish issues in the context of developments in Iraq and Syria, including the need to consolidate international efforts in countering ISIS and other terrorist groups.” Quite obviously, the immediate context is the stabilization of the situation in Iraq and Syria.
Of course, this is a poignant moment because Russia and the Kurds go back a long
way. Not many would know that although Russian policy historically had opposed Kurdish
independence, St. Petersburg used to be the foremost centre of Kurdish studies as
far back as the middle of the 19th century. In fact, Czarist Russia witnessed a florescence
of Kurdish studies and promotion of Kurdish culture. Under the auspices of the Imperial
Academy of Sciences in St. Petersburg, Kurdish-
Perhaps, the most notable Kurdish work published in St. Petersburg was a history
of Kurds originally complied in 1596 in Persian covering five centuries “so that
the history of the great ruling dynasties of Kurdistan will not remain unknown.”
The Russians had carried the original manuscript dated 1599 when they transferred
the entire Royal Safavid Library at Ardabil to St. Petersburg as spoils following
Czarist Russia’s victory in the war with Persia in 1828. A French edition of the
historical work was published in St. Petersburg in four volumes during 1869-
What an incredible chapter in the ancient saga of the intercourse of the Slavs and the Muslims! Some historians attribute motives to it – as reflecting Russia’s imperial ambitions built on notions of dismemberment of the Persian and Ottoman empires, access to the warm waters of the Persian Gulf and liberation of Christian minorities in those regions. Be that as it may, the point to be noted is that Kurdish independence had no part in those imperial ambitions.
This Russian approach vis-
We definitely have a very positive attitude towards the Kurds. We have long-
Indeed, how Moscow proposes to deploy the Kurdish international platform will be keenly watched. To be sure, Moscow is taking the initiative to consolidate the Kurdish cultural and political identity under an erudite and enlightened leadership at a juncture when the Kurdish militant groups in Syria, which were backed by the Americans, appear to be willing to negotiate with Damascus.
The Syrian Kurds realize that in the absence of any political commitments from Americans
for the future, the prudent course is to reconcile with Assad. A point of interest
here is that the Syrian Kurds all through the 7-