SULAIMANI – A Kurdish citizen from Iranian Kurdistan on Tuesday (May 18) poured a bottle of a highly flammable liquid over his body, used his lighter and set himself on fire outside the United Nations compound in Erbil.
The victim along with his fellow protester were refugees from Iranian Kurdistan, commonly known by Kurds as Rojhelat. He is 25 years old and sources from Erbil hospital said the fire left him with fatal injuries and burns across 91% of his body.
“No one from the UN compound listen to us… it has been four years we live in terrible conditions,” the victim told reporters minutes before the suicide attempt.
Kurdish refugees from Iran living in the Kurdistan Region are unable to obtain Iraqi citizenship that would allow them to have national rights like voting, land ownership, and passports. Some of them have fled from prosecution in their country of origin.
Many of the refugees’ families are affiliated with opposition parties, which have resumed an armed struggle against Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps.
Membership in the armed opposition parties is punishable by death in Iran.
Iranian Kurdish refugees in the Kurdistan Region have said that they are frustrated with years of waiting and repeated promises that their cases would be considered for resettlement in the US or Europe.