Simon Wiesenthal Center Commemorates Kurdish Massacre Exhibit

To commemorate and honor the victims of the Kurdish massacre during Saddam Hussein's reign of terror, the Simon Wiesenthal Center Museum of Tolerance is displaying a photo and video exhibit of the chemical attacks on the Kurdistan Region of Iraq. The exhibit opened on March 16, bringing light and remembrance to the 1988 Halabja massacre perpetrated against the Kurdish people. It is being shown in conjunction with the Kurdistan Regional Government of Iraq.

“Through remembrance of the victims of the Halabja attack, we are continuing the process of healing from decades of atrocities committed against the Kurdish people,” said Qubad Talabani, KRG Representative to the U.S. "The Kurdish people are grateful to the Simon Wiesenthal Center for providing a place for remembrance and for helping us raise awareness."

The exhibit opening took place on the 22nd anniversary of the attack, which commenced March 16, 1988, at the end of the Iran-Iraq War, when Iraqi government forces used chemical weapons on the Kurdish town of Halabja in Iraqi Kurdistan. More than 5,000 civilians, including women and children, died in the attack — one of several chemical attacks against the Kurdish people. Halabja remains the largest chemical weapons attack directed against a civilian-populated area in history. In January 2010, Ali Hassan al Majid, or “Chemical Ali”, was executed based on being found guilty of orchestrating the atrocities against the Kurdish people.

Originally designed for display at the United Nations in New York, the mobile Halabja exhibit will be at the Simon Wiesenthal Center Museum of Tolerance from the March 16 to March 29, 2010.

The exhibit opened on March 16, 2010, speaking at the event was Najat Abdullah, the U.S. Cultural Attaché for the Kurdistan Regional Government and Rabbi Abraham Cooper, the associate dean of the Simon Wiesenthal Center.

About the Kurdistan Regional Government
The Kurdistan Region is an autonomous region in federal Iraq. With a population of currently around 4 million and rapidly increasing, the three governorates of Duhuk, Erbil and Sulaimani cover approximately 40,000 square miles. The Kurdistan Region is considered to be the safest, most stable Region in Iraq, and it is host to an ever expanding number of commercial and trade initiatives.
For more information, please visit www.krg.org

About the Simon Wiesenthal Center Museum of Tolerance

The Simon Wiesenthal Center is one of the largest international Jewish human rights organizations with over 400,000 member families in the United States. It is an NGO at international agencies including the United Nations, UNESCO, the OSCE, the OAS, the Council of Europe and the Latin American Parliament (Parlatino). The Museum of Tolerance, the Center's educational arm, founded in 1993, challenges visitors to confront bigotry and racism, and to understand the Holocaust in both historic and contemporary contexts.

For more information, please contact the Center's Public Relations Department, 310-553-9036, join the Center on Facebook, www.facebook.com/simonwiesenthalcenter, the Museum of Tolerance on Facebook, www.facebook.com/museumoftolerance or follow @simonwiesenthal for news updates sent direct to your Twitter page or mobile device.