Mustafa Hijri, the leader of PDKI, delivered a speech at a rally on September 22 in support of southern (Iraqi) Kurdistan’s independence referendum.
He congratulated the people of Kurdistan in advance. “Congratulation to the martyrs’ families, congratulation to the brave peshmergas on the frontlines,” he said.
“We are hopeful to soon witness the independence of southern Kurdistan as the fruit of the blood of thousands of Peshmerga, [independence] will be a tribute to their sacrifices and bring a brighter future for the Kurdish nation”, he added.
Hijri delivered his speech at rally organized by PDKI in one of the party’s bases in southern Kurdistan. Thousands of Peshmerga, party members, cadres and refugees from eastern (Iranian) Kurdistan attended the rally.
“Our party, as the heir of the Republic of Kurdistan, has consistently been the champion of Kurdish national rights,” Hijri said in his speech.
“In spite of the brutal oppression of the Kurdish people and the massive violence inflicted on us during the reign of the Shah as well as by the current Islamist regime in Iran; and in spite of the assassination of our leaders, we have been steadfast in continuing the path of the Republic of Kurdistan, which is the path of self-determination”, he averred.
Hijri emphasized that this is the right time to hold a referendum in southern Kurdistan. “We reiterate that now is the most appropriate time for the Kurdish people of this part of Kurdistan to determine their future [in a referendum], because in the Kurdish nation’s century-long struggle for its rights, an opportunity like this one has not emerged,” he said.
“The strongest enemies of the Kurdish nation are embroiled in domestic crises and overstretched in regional conflicts,” the leader of PDKI said.
Hijri also took the opportunity to debunk the hypocrisy of the Iranian regime. “The Iranians claim that the Kurds are the most ‘original Iranians’, yet successiva regimes in Iran have not only denied us in eastern Kurdistan our basic rights and inflicted massive violence on our people and destroyed our country, but Iran is now the most nefarious opponent of the Kurdish people in southern Kurdistan and their democratic step to exercise the right of self-determination,” Hijri averred.
Regarding the threats against southern Kurdistan, Hijri asked rhetorically: “If, in the past, mass killings, the use of chemical weapons against Kurdish civilians and genocidal campaigns failed to break the will of the Kurdish people or hinder them from struggling for their national rights, how can threats [primarily by Iran] to close the borders and take military action against this part of Kurdistan have any effects on the brave Kurdish people?”