This Site is dedicated to the Seyyed Kamal Asfaram a.k.a Shwane Qadri, a courageous Kurdish youth who was brutally killed by Iranian Pasdaran in July 2005, and also to the  Eastern Kurdistan people for their resilience and endurance.

Iraqi Kurds protest, saying Iran has detained Kurds

SULAIMANIYA, Iraq, Aug 6 (Reuters) - Kurdish police dispersed hundreds of Kurds protesting outside U.N. offices in northern Iraq on Saturday over reports of detentions of dozens of Iranian Kurds just across the border.

"We support our brothers in Iran and demand that all the detainees are released," one demonstrator, Asso Mustafa, said in Sulaimaniya, adding he had friends among those detained.

Protesters said authorities in Iran had arrested dozens of Kurds over the last 10 days, including public figures well-known as Kurdish rights campaigners, after they had staged protests in favour of Kurdish rights in Iran.

Tensions boiled over in Iran's Kurdish territories last month with rioting in the town of Mahabad. Shortly afterwards, three Iranian policemen were killed in a gun battle with Kurdish separatists.

Iranian officials denied the unrest is ethnically motivated but Kurdish leaders disagree saying their people have been denied basic rights by Tehran.

A recent U.N. report on living standards in Iran has also suggested Iran was denying its ethnic and religious minorities basic amenities.

Iranian officials were not immediately able to comment on the alleged detentions, which were sparking protests in Iraq.

Close family and cultural ties link Kurds on each side of the border.

The demonstrators in Sulaimaniya, which lies close to the Iran, said the protests and arrests took place in the Iranian town of Mahabad and the city of Sanandaj.

They said officials of the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK), which controls the western side of Iraqi Kurdistan, had tried to stop the Sulaimaniya protests.

PUK is headed by Iraq's President Jalal Talabani.

"We had been trying to get permission to protest for over a week but the Interior Ministry warned us not to," said protester Rafik Fuad.

There were no reports of injuries.

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