I am absolutely gobsmacked by what the Gulan team have produced. …my sincerest congratulations to you, Richard, Della ,Tan, the artists and all contributors who have made such a significant document; a document which I am sure will have a significant impact on not only the people of Halabja but on everyone who has the privilege of reading it.
I think your magazine on Halabja is a brilliant idea and well executed. For too long Halabja has been synonymous with horrendous suffering. So it’s wonderful to have Gulan focus on the city’s history and impressive cultural past. There’s a real sense that this is helping Halabja ‘move on.’ So congratulations to all of you.
The Halabja booklet is wonderful, a model for others to produce similar publications on so many other places in Kurdistan with interesting stories to tell. The quality of writing and editing is superb, a key to be stringently promoted.
… so beautiful and moving. I’ve found it a fascinating read.
This book was so amazing to read, with so many stories and stunning pictures captivating the natural beauty of the city and its people’s. It did more than just give me a better insight and understanding of this city where my parent and family once called home
I’ve been enlightened to the immense artistic influence that Halabja had on the region, and its position of cultural wealth. As a young kurdish man born in the UK, it has been wonderful to read a piece which doesn’t solely focus on the tragedy that ensued; but instead on the riches of a city which defined a generation”.
Halabja: In the Golden Days
Part of the Journeys Festival International
Halabja in Iraqi Kurdistan is known mainly because of the terrible chemical weapons attack in 1988. This formed part of the ‘Anfal’ campaign of persecution in which up to 182,000 Kurds were killed by Saddam Hussein’s Ba’ath regime. Before Anfal, Halabja was famous for its gardens and the beauty of its landscapes, its poets and historical figures such as ‘Lady’ Adela Jaff.
Gulan and our associates have conducted interviews with people from Halabja to create a series of articles on the city’s art, theatre, music and sports. Together with essays written by experts on Halabja’s history, poetry and costumes, these articles are being published in this magazine as part of the Journeys Festival International 2020.
In addition to the many people from Halabja involved in this project, Gulan has also worked with Portsmouth’s Kurdish community, Portsmouth Cathedral and the organisation Mali Kurd. The large Kurdish community in Portsmouth, many of whom were originally from Halabja, have for many years held an annual commemoration ceremony for the Halabja attack.
Halabja: In the Golden Days was published online as part of the Journeys Festival International from 12th – 18th October 2020. The magazine can now be viewed / downloaded in .pdf format via the link below.