• Wednesday, 17 April 2024

President Masoud Barzani Addresses Kurdistan Diaspora Confederation on the Centenary of the Lausanne Treaty

President Masoud Barzani Addresses Kurdistan Diaspora Confederation on the Centenary of the Lausanne Treaty

On Saturday, May 27, 2023, President Masoud Barzani delivered a poignant speech at the inaugural meeting of the Kurdistan Diaspora Confederation in Lausanne. The conference marked the 100th anniversary of the Lausanne Treaty, a pivotal moment in Kurdish history. President Barzani addressed the audience, shedding light on the consequences of the agreement and emphasizing the need for a democratic and peaceful resolution to the Kurdish question.

In his speech, President Barzani expressed gratitude to the organizers and attendees of the important gathering. He highlighted the presence of numerous Kurdish political figures, elites, and activists, emphasizing the significance of exchanging views on a historical event in a historic setting. The Lausanne Treaty, signed a century ago, had far-reaching and disastrous implications for the Kurdish people.

President Barzani underscored the profound impact of the Lausanne Treaty, which brought about disaster, deprivation, marginalization, and denial for the Kurdish people. He lamented that the fundamental rights and will of the Kurds, rooted in their ancestral land for millennia, were disregarded. The president emphasized that the agreement symbolized oppression and initiated a dark chapter in Kurdish history.

Referencing the earlier Treaty of Sevres in 1920, President Barzani noted that it recognized the Kurds' right to independence, which is a legitimate and absolute right for any nation. However, the Lausanne Treaty linked the fate of the Kurdish people to the states into which they were divided, hindering their quest for self-determination.

President Barzani further elaborated on the negative consequences of the Lausanne Treaty, highlighting that it failed to foster progress, coexistence, or unity in the region. Instead, it created an unhealthy and unnatural reality, leading to prolonged instability. The division of Kurdistan into distinct parts, each with its own characteristics, resulted in the denial of legitimate Kurdish rights across all regions. The president stressed that this policy of denial by regional states compelled the Kurds to defend their identity, sparking a long-lasting struggle.

The president acknowledged that the conflict between the Kurdish people and the states into which they were divided did not yield a decisive victory for either side. Rather, it inflicted significant losses on the peoples of the region and hindered peace and stability. President Barzani emphasized that both the regional states and Kurdish parties must reassess their programs and strategies, advocating for a democratic and peaceful resolution to the Kurdish question.

President Barzani also highlighted the resilience of the Kurdish people in the face of oppression, particularly in the part of Kurdistan annexed to Iraq. He acknowledged the atrocities committed by successive Iraqi governments, such as the Anfal campaigns and chemical attacks, but commended the Kurdish people's unwavering bravery and their engagement in a protracted struggle for their rights.

In conclusion, President Barzani emphasized that the task of rectifying the consequences of the Lausanne Treaty and addressing the mistakes of the past rests not only on the Kurdish people but also on the regional states and influential international powers. He called upon the Kurdish diaspora to play an instrumental role in raising awareness, advocating for the Kurdish cause, and seeking support from the international community to mitigate the historical oppression faced by the Kurdish people.

President Barzani's speech at the Kurdistan Diaspora Confederation's meeting served as a rallying cry for unity and a reminder of the ongoing struggle for Kurdish rights. The conference aims to provide recommendations and clarity on how to address the long-lasting effects of the Lausanne Treaty.