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Mahabad
Mahabad is located in Iran
Mahabad
Location in Iran
Coordinates: 36°46′N 45°43′E / 36.767°N 45.717°E / 36.767; 45.717
Country Flag of Iran.svg Iran
Province West Azarbaijan Province

Mahabad (Persian: مهاباد, Kurdish: مهاباد ) is a city in northwestern Iran with a population of 133,324 in 2006 census.[1] The city lies south of Lake Urmia in a narrow valley 1,300 metres above sea level, in West Azarbaijan Province.The name of 'Mahabad' (mah+abad) is the Persian translation of the ancient Mannaean name meaning place of moon, which is also a cognate with the Kurdish word mang. Mannaeans were a branch of Hurrians (Khurrites), a northern Mesopotamian people. It was referred to in the Turkic languages as 'Savoj-bolaq', or 'Sablakh', which means "Cold-spring water".

Mahabad is the centre of a rich agricultural region, but the city itself is little developed by Iranian standards. Mahabad is connected by road with Tabriz 300 km north, Urmia 150 km north and Irbil in Iraq. The population of Mahabad is predominantly Kurdish. The city has also a university, the Islamic Azad University of Mahabad.[2]

Contents

History

The region of Mahabad was the centre of the Mannaeans, who flourished in the early 1st millennium BC.[3] The city of Mahabad has often been the centre of Kurdish nationalist movements in Iran.[4] During the Safavid dynasty, the region of Mukriyan experienced political turmoil. In 1609-1610, during the battle of "DimDim", the Mukriyan tribes of the region supported "Amir Khan Lepzerin" (Golden Hand Khan), the Kurdish ruler of Bradost. For further detail see "Iranian Kurdistan" section in Kurdistan article. (Also see [5], [6]) .

The Chuwarchira Square at night in 2006, where the proclamation of the Republic of Mahabad in 1946 was.

Local traditions hold that there was an older Mahabad in what is today known as plain of Sharwêran (ruined city), in neighbourhood of modern Mahabad but was destroyed by the invading armies in medieval era.

Mahabad was a small village in Deryaz, until the leader of Kurdish Mukri Tribe Budaq Sultan made it capital of its regional government with permission of Safavid kings. Budaq Sultan constructed many noteworthy buildings were there.[7]They ruled this city until Qajar kings ended their emirate in the middle of 19th century. Mahabad in World War I was a center of combat between the Ottoman Empire and Russia. It was sacked by Russia, and then by Semko. In 1935 a great flood ruined much of the city. Much of the modern city was built is the result of the reconstruction. Mahabad was briefly the capital of a Soviet controlled Kurdish Republic of Mehabad, which declared its independence on January 1, 1946 under the leadership of Qazi Muhammad and Russian backers. Iran did not relinquish Mahabad and the Soviets lost ground by 1947.

During the 1979 Islamic Revolution people who did not support the revolution clashed with its backers in Mahabad on the 3rd of September[citation needed]. Other cities in the region were also involved in heavy clashes in the political turmoil of the revolution. Many Mahabadis saw the opportunity to advance their political positions with the fall of Shah's government. Regional unrest again occurred in 2005 when Kurdish youth organizations demonstrated for more political freedoms. These peaceful demonstrations were met with several arrests in by Iranian authorities in Mahabad[citation needed] and the surrounding region.

Culture

The prolific translator into Persian, Mohammad Qazi came from Mahabad. He translated more than 70 important literary works into Persian. Some poets and writers have hailed from this city in the 19th and 20th century. Wafaei(1844-1902), Hejar (Abdurrahman Sharfkandi)(1920-1990), Hêmin(Sayyed Moháammad Amini Shaykho-al-Eslam Mokri)(1920-1986), Abdorrahamn Zabihi (1920-1980) and Giw Mukriyani, all from Mahabad, are considered as the main writers and poets. The first Kurdish-Kurdish-Persian Dictionary in Iran was written by Hejar. Kurdistan's national poet was the title given to Hejar(along with Hêmin) during the short lived reign of the Republic of Mahabad in recognition of his poetry's service to the cause[8]. After the fall of the Pahlavi monarchy in Iran in 1979, "Hêmin" set up the Salaha-al-Din Ayyubi Kurdish publishing house in Urmia, which publishes Sirwe (from spring 1985), a quarterly cultural magazine that Hêmin ran until his death in 1986 [9]. The dialect of Mahabad, is adopted as the literary standard of Kurdish language in western Iran.(which is very close to the standard "sorani" used in Iraqi Kurdistan)

Human-rights situation

The most recent unrest in the town of Mahabad began in early July 2005, following the shooting of Shivan Qaderi. Kurdish sources mention him as "a Kurdish opposition activist"[citation needed]. Shivan Qaderi also known as Sayed Kamal Astam, or Astom, and two other Kurdish men, are told to be arrested by governmental forces in the town of Mahabad on 9 July. The government claimed he was a smuggler and criminal.

Kurdish and opposition version of events: "The security forces then reportedly tied Shivan Qaderi’s body to a Toyota jeep and dragged him in the streets. The local Iranian authorities are reported to have confirmed that a person of this name, “who was on the run and wanted by the judiciary”, was indeed shot and killed by security forces at this time, allegedly while trying to evade arrest. During the days following Shivan Qaderi’s death, several thousand Mahabad residents, mainly youths, took to the streets to protest the killings. The demonstrations spread to other mainly Kurdish neighbouring towns of Sanandaj (Sinne), Sardasht, Piranshahr, Oshnavieh, Baneh, Bokan and Saqqez. (see [10] and [11]) According to the Human Rights Watch, 17 Kurdish people were killed by the Iranian security forces in July and August 2005, during the demonstrations in different cities in Iranian Kurdistan.[12]". This interpretation of events is not accepted by the official Iranian sources.

References

Mahabad

External links

Coordinates: 36°46′N 45°43′E / 36.767°N 45.717°E / 36.767; 45.717

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Simple English

Mahabad (in Persian: مهاباد , in Kurdish: مه‌هاباد, Mehabad); (Old name: سابلاخ: Sablakh, which may be of Mongolian origin) is a city in Iran. It is in the north-west of the country. The city lies south of Lake Urmia in a narrow valley 1,300 metres above sea level. It lies in West Azarbaijan Province. It has about 162.434 people who live in the city. Mahabad is connected by road with Tabriz 300 km north, Urmia 150 km north and Irbil in Iraq. Mahabad has also an university. It's the Islamic Azad University of Mahabad.

The city is one center and symbol of the Kurdish nationalism. The reason is because 1945 it was the capital of the new founded people's Republic of Mahabad. The republic was conquered by Iranian forces in 16 December 1946. The president was Qazi Muhammad. The majority of the population is Kurdish. During the revolution in Iran, at 3 September 1979 the city was bombed and occupied by Iranian forces. After the death of Shivan Qaderi, a student and opposition activist in July 9 2005, the Kurdish population protested against the Iranian government.


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