Armed Action in Rojhelat

  • Abbas Vali
Part of the Minorities in West Asia and North Africa book series (MWANA)


This chapter focuses on the causes and consequences of the short-lived armed struggle in 1967 in Rojhelat. Although armed struggle against Pahlavi absolutism had already been incorporated into the KDPI’s programme by the Second Congress in 1964, it never featured in the political agenda of the party. The armed action, it is argued, was premature and miscalculated, carried out by a group of disaffected members on the left of the party critical of the leadership and opposed to his subservience to Barzani. They were forced to leave Iraqi Kurdistan and move to Rojhelat and embark on armed struggle there by the course of the events leading to the marginalisation of the Marxist-nationalists in the party after the Second Congress, which had resulted from adverse developments in the political field in Iraqi Kurdistan and the region more generally. Although the armed action was short-lived with little immediate effect on the political and military fields in Rojhelat, it had immense long-term effects on the development of the nationalist movement, contributing, in no small measure, to the fortunes of the Marxist-nationalists in the party, boosting the legitimacy of their claim to leadership.

Selected Bibliography

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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  • Abbas Vali
    • 1
  1. 1.LondonUK

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