The Kurds are an ethnic group who have historically inhabited the mountainous areas to the south of Caucasus (Northern Zagros and Eastern Taurus mountain ranges), a geographical area collectively referred to as Kurdistan. Most Kurds speak an Indo-European language belonging to the Northwestern Iranian branch. Kurdistan is divided into 4 different parts which are in Turkey, Iraq, Iran, and Syria. Kurdish people have one of the longest ethnic histories in the middle east. Their lineage dates back to as early as 2400 BC, where they occupied the same lands as they do today. However many foreign invasions and immigrants shaped the face of the Kurdish people over time. Though Kurds had followed the teaching of Islam since an Arabic invasion in the 7th century, their culture remained distinctly different from all the others found around it. This early separatism would lay the groundwork for problems in outside parties ruling the area.
There are various hypotheses as to predecessor populations of the Kurds, such as the Carduchoi of Classical Antiquity and Medes. The earliest known Kurdish dynasties under Islamic rule (10th to 12th centuries) are the Hasanwayhids, the Marwanids, the Shaddadids, followed by the Ayyubid dynasty founded by Saladin. The Battle of Chaldiran of 1514 is an important turning point in Kurdish history, marking the alliance of Kurds with the Ottomans. The Sharafnameh of 1597 is the first account of Kurdish history. Kurdish history in the 20th century is marked by a rising sense of Kurdish nationhood focused on the goal of an independent Kurdistan as scheduled by the Treaty of Sèvres in 1920. Partial autonomy was reached by Kurdistan Uyezd (1923–1926) and by Iraqi Kurdistan (since 1991), while notably in Turkish Kurdistan, an armed conflict between the PKK and Turkish Armed Forces was ongoing from 1984 to 1999, and the region continues to be unstable with renewed violence flaring up in the 2000's.
· 5 years ago