Kurdistan Province, Iran

From Academic Kids

This article is about the Iranian province. For the larger area held to include parts of Turkey, Iraq, Iran, Georgia and Syria, see: Kurdistan.
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Map showing Iranian province of Kordestan.

Kordestan, or Kurdistan (in Persian: استان کردستان), is one of the thirty provinces of Iran, not to be confused with the greater geographical area of Kurdistan. It is in the west of the country, bordering Iraq. The province of Kurdistan is 28,817 km2 in area and is located in the west of Iran. It is bound by Iraq on its west, the province of west Azerbaijan to its north, Zanjan to s northwest, and Kermanshah to its south.

The capital of Kordestan is the city of Sanandaj. Other major cities of the province are Marivan, Baneh, Saqqez, Qorveh, Bijar and Sardasht

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Imamzade Pir Mohammad


Kurds are Aryan tribes who migrated to the region several thousands years ago.Situated on the ancient Silk Road, on the northern edge of the Fertile Crescent, Kurdistan grew to be a prosperous area during the Middle Ages.In the early Islamic period, 637-641,all Kurdish castles and fortifications as well as major cities were occupied by Arabs. In 634 AD when Arabs Attacked Fars, Kurdish people of this state took part in the war against Arabs for defending the city of Fasa. Finally Kurds were defeated by Arabs in the year 636. In 835 one of the Kurdish leaders revolted against Motasem the Caliph, but finally he was suppressed. Since then Kurds revolted against the Caliphs several time but were defeated by them. They also revolted against Buwayhid dynasty but they were defeated as well. Mongols destroyed Kurdish cities and then during the time of the Timurid and Turkmen, Kurdistan was the arena of conflicts between different invaders. Its steady decline began in the 16th century when sea traffic replaced the Silk Road. During the reign of Shah Ismail I, the founder of Safavid dynasty, Sunnite Kurds were supported by Ottoman Caliphs against Shiite government of Safavid. With the establishment of Zand dynasty, for the first time in the history of Iran, a Kurdish dynasty took the throne. In the late Zandieh period, some parts of west Azarbaijan were under the seizure of Kurdish tribes. During 19th and 20th centuries AD,Kurdish tribes of the region revealed their inner inclination for independence and establishment of a Kurdish government . In 1946 AD, coincident with the occupation of Iran by the Allies, Ghazi Mohammed formed the Peoples Republic of Kurdistan with the help of Russians. But after complete evacuation of Iran by Allies and sending of Iranian army forces to Azarbaijan and Kurdistan, this republic was disintegrated.


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A small village in mountainous area of Kurdistan
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Lake Zarivar

Kurdistan Province is entirely a mountainous region that can be divided into two western and eastern sections from topographical points of view which are located in the east and west of Sanandaj. Kurdistan province, being predominantly covered by mountains and hills, has many rivers, lakes, natural ice-stores and caves which render it rather picturesque. Consequently, Kurdistan has always attracted a large number of tourists and fans of mountaineering, ski, and water-sports.

Zarrinehorood, 302 km long, is one of the longest rivers of this province. Its banks offer great opportunities for recreation and the river's plentiful water renders itself ideal for water sports. This river runs northwards and ultimately pours into lake Urumieh. Sirvan river is another prominent river in this province. It runs over a long distance, eventually to join the Tigris in Iraq. The banks of this river, too are remarkably attractive and pleasing. Ghezel Ozoon and Saminerhrood are two other important rivers in this province. A large number of marine species and birds live on the banks of the province's numerous rivers which they seem to find ideal habitats.

Lake Zarivar is the most beautiful waters of the province which lies at the feet to high mountains, providing a delightfully picturesque sight. Its water is sparkingly fresh. The lake has a maximum depth of 50 m and an average depth of 3 m. It is surrounded by think forests. The whole collection of the lake, the mountains and forests a fascinating panorama. This lake, which has a length of 5 km and a maximum which width of 1.7 km, lies to the west of Marivan. Lake Vahdat's dam, to the north of Sanandaj, provides excellent opportunities for fishing and water-sports.

Kurdistan has the benefit of many resourceful mineral water springs. The most outstanding of these are: Govaz to the northwest of Kamyaran, Abetalkh close to Bijar and Baba Gargar to the north of Ghorveh.

Cave Kereftoo, close to Divandarreh, is a unique natural and at the same time archeological site. Inside the cave there are a number of ancient buildings known as the Temple of Heraclius, because the name of this Greek god is carved on the ceiling of one of the halls. Cave Shoovi, 267 m long, is another prominent cave, which lies near the city of Baneh.

Mount Charkhaln 3,330 m high, mount Chehelcheshmeh, 3,173 m, Mount Hossein Bak, 3,091 m, and Mount Masjede Mirza, 3,059 m, are the other large mountains of Kurdistan.

Kurdistan has vast forests and refuges, where many animals and birds live, safely from the harms of the human beings: the leopard, ram, wild goat, hyena, jackal, wolf, fox, sable, wesel and such birds as the partridge, wild duck, stork, parrot, eagle.


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Kurdish traditional attire for women

Kurdistan is one of the most mountainous regions in Iran and has a generally mild and quite pleasant climate throughout the spring and summer.Winters are long and can be very cold with heavy snowfalls.

People and culture

The population of the province in 1996 was 1,346,383 of which 52.42% were urban dwellers and 47.58% rural dwellers. The sex ratio of the Province is 104. The Kurdish people are the majority population in this province, who consider themselves to be descended from the ancient Medes. They speak Sorani-Kurdish which is a northwestern Iranian language closely related to Persian. Azeri is spoken in some eastern parts of the province. The region's historical name is Ardalan.


The major activities of the inhabitants are agriculture and modern livestock farming. Wheat, barley, grains and fruits are the major agricultural products. The chemical, metal, textile, leather and food industries are the main industrial activities in this province.

See also

fa:استان کردستان

nl:Kurdistan (provincie)


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