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Kurdish activist to speak in Lancaster en route on ‘Walk for Dignity & Liberty’

Kani Xulam (Source: American Kurdish Information Network)

Kani Xulam has dedicated his life to the cause of Kurdish rights and the creation of a free, independent Kurdish state.

Thirty years ago, he left his family business to found the American Kurdish Information Network, a Washington, D.C.-based organization promoting Kurdish-American understanding and friendship.

On Saturday, Xulam is embarking on a “Walk for Dignity and Liberty” to mark the anniversary of the treaty that left the Kurdish people stateless.

Over three weeks, he plans to lead a march from the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C., to the United Nations in New York City.

If you go

  • What: Presentation by Kani Xulam on Kurdish self-determination
  • When: 7 p.m. Saturday, July 8
  • Were: Lancaster Friends Meeting, 110 Tulane Terrace, Lancaster
  • Cost: Free

For more information, email Jean Boal.

“Highlighting the Kurdish struggle for freedom is our purpose,” he says in a video explaining the initiative.

His route will take him north to York then east through Lancaster to Philadelphia. He is speaking at stops along the way to raise awareness and build support for Kurdish self-determination.

In Lancaster, he will speak at 7 p.m. Saturday, July 8, at Lancaster Friends Meeting, 110 Tulane Terrace. His presentation will cover the Kurdish people and their history, his walk and his vision of a free, peaceful future for the Kurds and for all peoples.

Supporters are encouraged to join the march, he said, either for a few miles or the whole route of more than 300 miles.

(Source: Wikimedia)

The Kurdish homeland sits in the Mideast south of the Black Sea. Part of the Ottoman Empire for centuries, it was partitioned by the Allied powers after World War I, divided among Syria, Iraq, Turkey and Iran.

Subsequent efforts to form a Kurdish state have been ruthlessly suppressed. Today, the Kurds are “a minority people everywhere they live,” Xulam said.

The agreement that sealed the Kurds’ fate was the Treaty of Lausanne, signed on July 24, 1923. Xulam is timing the walk to arrive at the United Nations on the treaty’s centenary.

“The application of a principle called mutual tolerance supported by people of goodwill around the world can restore us to our land,” Xulam said. “We welcome your support to make room for a free Kurdistan.”