Iraqi Kurdistan

Displaced people at the Jadaa camp in northern Iraq are observing Ramadan despite difficult conditions. As they prepare for Iftar, camp residents describe the hardships they face and how they are trying to recreate the Ramadan atmosphere they once knew back home
The only way we are going to bring an end to violence around the world is by speaking out and acknowledging that this problem exists
I'm in Iraqi Kurdistan. It's my third time here. Each time I come, it's to learn more about the different forms of violence and discrimination facing women and girls in the region as part of my work with my women's rights organization Project Monma.
The challenge of understanding "who's fighting who" in the conflict in Syria and Iraq has led to a simplified representation of the Kurds solely taking up arms against ISIS. Kurdish groups such as the People's Protection Units (YPG) have indeed proved worthy adversaries to this Islamist extremist group and as allies to the US. However, scores of Iraqi Kurds are also fighting alongside violent extremist groups.
The tenth anniversary of the 7/7 Al Qaeda bombings, in which 52 people were slaughtered in London, coincided last week with
Western foreign policy vis-à-vis Iraq & Syria is an incoherent and ineffective mess. It is becoming painfully obvious that the lazily sporadic Western/coalition air strikes in the two countries, particularly in Iraq, are proving ineffective at pushing back ISIS, let alone defeating it.
Your Facebook feed may be packed with videos, and celebrities are embracing the craze zealously, but a senior Kurdistan politician
The Kurds need help with refugees, medical supplies and defending themselves. The Kurds are our allies in the moment of their greatest need. That should become a key theme in Westminster.
What's in a name? Isis used to be an Egyptian goddess. The ideal mother and wife; patroness of nature and magic. Now ISIS refers to brutal violence, extremism, and war. Will the Islamist movement cause oil prices to explode?
British ignorance of and even an element of wariness towards the Kurdistan Region have been replaced in recent years by a growing recognition of its potential by MPs and Ministers alike...
Last week I visited the Domiz refugee camp for the third time in six months and saw many children at school and play. Once again, I was struck by their cheeriness and resilience. I wanted to find some of the children I met in June but the camp has mushroomed since then from 50,000 to 75,000 so it would have been difficult.
It is rare for an opposition to stop a government and, given its angst over Iraq, Labour heralded it as a triumph for multilateralism. It also chimes with most British people who, like the Americans, are weary of foreign entanglements.
As well as playing basketball with the children, Gasol chatted with Tolin and her sister. Tolin told him how she fled Syria with her family seven months ago to escape the violence and bombing. She also told him she still wants to be a doctor when she grows up, even though she hasn't been to school since she left Syria...
It sometimes seems that Iraqi Kurds have no word with the urgency of manana but it hasn't stopped Iraqi Kurdistan making tremendous strides in a few short years. The best start date for their renaissance is 2006, the first full year of the new Iraqi constitution, agreed by the people and which recognised Kurdistan as a largely autonomous region.
The vast and sprawling refugee camp at Domiz near the Iraqi Kurdish city of Duhok is a stark reminder of the human interests at stake in the increasingly fraught debate about how to stop the slaughter in Syria.
Nawroz shivered as I spoke with her, her dark hair dripping and her thin red top soaked through. Her husband queued at the registration desk in a sodden tee-shirt. But her baby daughter, Ava, was warm and dry. She gurgled, grabbing my fingers tightly, as I played with her.
While many of the world's governments want to prevent genocide, they almost never act to achieve this aim. This despite most being signatories to the UN Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of Genocide which is explicitly designed to compel them to do just that.
Apart from struggling for political independence, the Kurds are now steadily stabilising in the Kurdistan Region under the leadership of the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG).
One of the most famous captions of all time has been 'life is but a stage'. The stage has been set for the Kurdish Nation
I decided to leave my footprint by arranging for Healthy Planet, a British Charity, to provide me with 20,000 British Books, so that I could transfer it to a deserted public library in the Kurdistan Region.