Kurdish Iranian opposition politician and writer denied award reception by Sulaimani officials

SULAIMANI, Kurdistan Region — Sulaimani authorities have prevented Abdullah Hassanzadeh, a Kurdish writer and key figure in Iranian opposition parties, from receiving a local literature award, causing concern among city journalists and writers.

Hassanzadeh, who previously held the position of secretary general for the Kurdistan Democratic Party of Iran (KDPI), was nominated by the local literary Karimi Alaka Foundation to receive an award on Sunday. However, security forces intervened, instructing the foundation to abruptly halt the ceremony just thirty minutes before it was scheduled to commence.

In a statement on Tuesday, Hassanzadeh attributed the interference and prevention to Iran.

“It’s obvious that the intelligence agencies of the Islamic Republic [of Iran] intentionally orchestrated the cancellation of the meeting just moments before its commencement, aiming to tarnish the reputation of Sulaimani officials,” Hassanzadeh said in the statement.

Hassanzadeh asserts that the incident underscores the stark reality that the Iranian regime is permitted to interfere in cultural and social affairs within the Kurdistan Region.

Aziz Rauf, one of the writers who responded to the cancellation of the award, emphasizes the need for sincere apologies to the people of Rojhelat (Iranian Kurdistan).

Yasin Aftaw, a journalist and university professor, also expresses his dismay over the decision to withhold recognition from Abdullah Hassanzadeh, considering it a disgrace to the Kurdistan Region’s reputation, particularly in Sulaimani.

He questions the credibility of discussions on freedom, justice, and liberation when individuals like Hassanzadeh are restricted in their movements.

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