Humans of Kurdistan
The "Humans Of Kurdistan" project aims to present the cultural diversity of the country. A look at the faces but also the stories that lie behind each of them.

March 31, 2021

“During Ahmad Hasan Bakr’s presidency, there was an opportunity for students to travel outside of the country for 3 months. I was able to get a travel passport, travel to Vienna/Austria and then stayed there illegally. I handed myself in and told the police that I don’t want to go back to my country. I was put in a camp in 1979 and then had my residency card. I was working in an Austrian electric company for a year where we used to make light bulbs. I was doing well financially. I started learning German because German is the main language in Austria. I stayed there for 8 years and got my citizenship. In 1985, my father was arrested by the government and they used that as a pressure card for me to go back to Mousil. I went to the Iraqi consulate there and said that I will only go back if my father was released”.

“I remember that they drugged me, and when I opened my eyes I was in Baghdad. I later realized that they treated me this way because I supported Kurds in protests and participated in rally against the Anfal. I had an Austrian citizenship and they saved me from being executed by the Baath regime. Being tortured has affected me psychologically, but I feel fortunate to be living in a peaceful Kurdistan now”.