Started by aryan, Jul 27, 2019, 03:29 PM

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The Peshmerga, whose name translates as "those who face death", are the Kurdish fighters in northern Iraq. In recent weeks, they have been fighting Islamist militants of the Islamic State - formerly known as Isis - who seized large swathes of territory in the north.

Now thought to number around 190,000, the Peshmerga have their roots in groups of loosely organised tribal border guards in the late 1800s, but were formally organised as the national fighting force of the Kurdish people after the fall of the Ottoman Empire in the wake of World War One.

As the Kurdish nationalist movement grew, so too did the identity of the Peshmerga as a key part of Kurdish culture - evolving from tribal defenders to nationalist fighters for an independent Kurdish state.