The Catholic University of America
 
Halabja: Echoes of Genocide in Kurdistan
How can communities in Kurdistan and Iraq halt the cycle of genocide?
 
Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Newseum
Knight Conference Center, Level 7
 

 
Conference participants will receive a commemorative booklet and complimentary tickets to visit the museum. 
 
Schedule
 
8:30 am
Registration and light breakfast
 
9:20 am
Video message
Halabjans Appeal to the UN
 
9:30 am
Opening remarks
Bayan Sami Abdul Rahman
KRG Representative to the United States
 
Andrew Peek
Deputy Assistant Secretary for Iran and Iraq
US Department of State
 
Remarks by officials from the Government of Iraq and Members of Congress
                                                
9:55 am
Documenting An Untold Story: The Kurdistan Memory Programme 
Gwynne Roberts
 
10:25 am
Tales of Survival
Remarks by survivors of the Halabja Genocide
             
10:55 am
Morning keynote speech
Simon Adams
 
 11:15 am
Panel discussion
Missing In Action: Justice and Accountability
 
Panelists include:
Dr. Gregory Stanton, Genocide Watch
Nawaf Ashur, Yezidi witness to 2014 genocide
Dr. Michael Newton, Vanderbilt University
 
Moderator:
Dr. Elie Abouaoun, US Institute of Peace
 
12:30 pm
Lunch
 
1:30 pm
Daniel Libeskind
 
Thomas S. Kaplan
Chairman of Justice for Kurds and Chairman of The Electrum Group
 
2:30 pm
Panel discussion
Use of chemical weapons in Iraq and Syria - where next?

Panelists include:
Dr. Seth Carus, chemical weapons expert
 
3:45 pm
Premier screening of "One Yezidi Family vs ISIS"
RWF World Documentary film on the Yezidi genocide by ISIS
 
4:30 pm
Closing remarks
Bayan Sami Abdul Rahman
KRG Representative to the United States
 

On March 16, 1988, Iraqi aircraft attacked the city of Halabja with chemical weapons. Children were lost in the chaos that followed, families were decimated as 5,000 people died and thousands more were injured with poison gas.
 
This genocide was one of many atrocities committed against the people of Kurdistan by the dictator Saddam Hussein. During his rule, 182,000 Kurds were killed in the Anfal genocide campaign; 8,000 Barzani men and boys were murdered in 1983; thousands of Faylee Kurds disappeared, and thousands more were oppressed, abused, and killed by the Ba'athist regime. The genocide also saw the destruction of 4,500 villages and the razing of cities such as Qala Diza, tearing at the fabric of Kurdish society and economy.
 
The suffering of the people of Halabja has come to symbolize all of the atrocities committed against the people of Kurdistan.  In Iraq, violence and genocide is cyclical, and in 2014 we again witnessed a genocide against the Yezidis, Christians and others in Nineveh. How can communities in Iraq prevent mass atrocities?
 
This year we will commemorate the 30th anniversary of the Halabja genocide. We invite you to join us for a conference to discuss this atrocity, the cycle of genocide, how this impacts politics in Kurdistan and  Iraq today, and the imperative for justice and reconciliation.


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Kurdistan Regional Government - Iraq
Representation in the United States