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Hi from England

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Hi from England

PostAuthor: biddy » Fri Jul 25, 2008 9:15 am

Just saying hello and introducing myself. I live in England. I'm not Kurdish. I was introduced to the plight of the Kurds when I travelled through Syria some years ago. I made friends with a Kurdish young man and stayed with his family in Qamishly. In fact, it would be interesting to catch up with him again, and say Hi. Is there anyone from Qamishly on this forum?
I'm also interested in some information on Iraqi Kurdistan - I'll post questions under another topic.
Regards, biddy.

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Hi from England

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Re: Hi from England

PostAuthor: matin123 » Sun Jul 27, 2008 12:48 pm

welcome to roj bash kurdistan!
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Re: Hi from England

PostAuthor: Diri » Sun Jul 27, 2008 1:35 pm

Welcome brother...


Pleased to have you aboard... And what a lovely experience you must have had in Qamişlo! :)


Best wishes
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Re: Hi from England

PostAuthor: kurdangel » Sun Jul 27, 2008 8:18 pm

welcome, :D
http://www.youtube.com/kurdangel

------------

pêşim merge, piştim merge
Cemî şawim û rojim merge
lem duniya da beşim merge
merg merg merg

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to minit xulqanwe bo qaher
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Re: Hi from England

PostAuthor: biddy » Mon Jul 28, 2008 1:32 pm

Hi. Thanks for the welcome. I had a great time in the Kurdish region of northern Syria. The Kurdish family I stayed with in Qamishly learnt of my desire to get to a small place called (I think) Ain Dewar, and see the remains of an ancient bridge, they helped me get there. We had to hitch rides in trucks, vans and tractors, and get police permission to go there as it was so close to the Iraq border. It was a fantastic adventure.
I also remember going to a restaurant over a natural spring, at a place called (again, I think) Ras al Ain. The tables were set in the water, customers have to take their shoes off and sit with their feet in the running water. I entered the restaurant alone and a huge Kurdish family invited me to eat with them as their guest.
I have great memories of the Kurds in northern Syria. They were all very hospitable.
I am giving very serious consideration to visiting Iraqi Kurdistan next year. I understand the Iraq Minister of Tourism is now trying to encourage people to start visiting the Kurdish region, as it is (relatively) safe. I desperately want to go. A new international airport opened for business at Erbil on the 20th July this year, which is great news.
If I do manage to go, it would be good to have some contacts out there. Anyone from Iraqi Kuristan on this forum?...

Regards, Biddy.

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Re: Hi from England

PostAuthor: Kubilay » Mon Jul 28, 2008 10:54 pm

biddy wrote:Hi. Thanks for the welcome. I had a great time in the Kurdish region of northern Syria. The Kurdish family I stayed with in Qamishly learnt of my desire to get to a small place called (I think) Ain Dewar, and see the remains of an ancient bridge, they helped me get there. We had to hitch rides in trucks, vans and tractors, and get police permission to go there as it was so close to the Iraq border. It was a fantastic adventure.
I also remember going to a restaurant over a natural spring, at a place called (again, I think) Ras al Ain. The tables were set in the water, customers have to take their shoes off and sit with their feet in the running water. I entered the restaurant alone and a huge Kurdish family invited me to eat with them as their guest.
I have great memories of the Kurds in northern Syria. They were all very hospitable.
I am giving very serious consideration to visiting Iraqi Kurdistan next year. I understand the Iraq Minister of Tourism is now trying to encourage people to start visiting the Kurdish region, as it is (relatively) safe. I desperately want to go. A new international airport opened for business at Erbil on the 20th July this year, which is great news.
If I do manage to go, it would be good to have some contacts out there. Anyone from Iraqi Kuristan on this forum?...

Regards, Biddy.

Hi biddy. Welcome
I advise you dont go to Irak. Come visit beautiful Bursa. The cuisine is very tasty. Warm mineral rich springs are so relaxing. Historical places are realy wonderful too. :)

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Re: Hi from England

PostAuthor: biddy » Tue Jul 29, 2008 12:47 pm

Kubilay wrote:Hi biddy. Welcome
I advise you dont go to Irak. Come visit beautiful Bursa. The cuisine is very tasty. Warm mineral rich springs are so relaxing. Historical places are realy wonderful too. :)


Thanks, but I really, really want to go to Iraq. I've spent a lot of time in Turkey, although not in Bursa, and you are right, it is a beautiful country, but I want to see Iraq.
Biddy.

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Re: Hi from England

PostAuthor: Evin » Tue Jul 29, 2008 7:05 pm

Hi from England right back at you Biddy and welcome to RBK!

What can I say, go for it! I can't recommend a visit to South Kurdistan enough; beautiful place, lovely people, fantastic food, superb hospitality... think you get the message! I spent a few weeks there earlier this year and had a wonderful time - I really would recommend anyone pay a visit. In terms of safety - I felt as safe there (if not safer) than I do here in Manchester - and the people were so very, very welcoming.

If you want to ask anything about Kurdistan from a 'foreigners' perspective, feel free - in the meantime, I hope I've helped put your mind at rest a little.... and yes I will be returning next year!

Take Care.

PS. Check out the 'Beautiful Kurdistan' topic for lots of pics of South Kurdistan - you can see for yourself what you're missing!

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Re: Hi from England

PostAuthor: biddy » Wed Jul 30, 2008 9:43 am

Hi Evin.
Tell me more. What time of year did you go? How did you get there? Where exactly did you visit? What about accomodation - I doubt there are hostels(!) - but plenty of cheap hotels? Is travelling around easy? Is it still possible to enter via the border crossing through Turkey, or does Turkish military/PKK problem make this inadvisable? Tell me all!...

Cheers, Biddy.

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Re: Hi from England

PostAuthor: Evin » Wed Jul 30, 2008 8:59 pm

Hi Biddy

No worries, here goes!

I went in March-April, the main reason being for the Newroz (Kurdish New Year) celebrations but also because Spring really is a beautiful time of year to visit. Kurdistan experiences some real extreme weather as you're probably aware, very cold in Winter and very hot in Summer, Spring is just perfect!

We went via Jordan, from Heathrow to Amman then Amman to Hewler (Erbil) but that was to allow us to visit some friends in Amman and spend a few days with them - you can travel to Kurdistan direct via several European countries now (Austria, Frankfurt etc) and I'm hoping that by next year, the UK will have got things sorted and we can fly direct, fingers crossed!

Personally, I try to avoid Turkey, not because of border problems but because I choose not to spend 1p of my hard earned money on an oppressive, dictatorial state like Turkey. I would go via the moon if it meant I wasn't supporting their government - next year, we'll probably go with Austrian airlines or one of the other Europeans, although I must warn you it's not cheap, so get saving!

I don't think there are problems with the border crossings in Turkey, apart from the queues, I certainly know of several people who have taken that route and their only complaints are around the time taken - I'm sure it's safe enough though. You can always go via Syria too, they do taxi services between both Kurdistan regions, I would imagine it's a good 12 hour drive though, so not sure if you're up for that - very cheap though!

On arrival, there were absolutely no problems with obtaining visas - I've never actually needed one (being married to a Kurd) but again, I've never heard of anyone else experiencing problems and as I said earlier, they are always so very welcoming and so pleased to receive visitors.

I'm very lucky in that we stay with family when we visit, so I've no worries about sorting accommodation - my problems are with in-laws fighting over us, bless! That said, there are numerous hotels, certainly in Hewler, it's a very busy and vibrant city and more and more 'foreigners' are visiting, so I don't foresee any problems for you.

Hope that helps - and if you decide to visit in Spring, let me know - we'll meet up and you can experience of the wonderful Kurdish hospitality at my in-laws!

One of the guys here actually lives in Hewler (he goes by the name of Lost), so might be worth sending him a PM - I'm sure he'll be only too happy to help if you've any concerns. Again, I would encourage you to go for it - you'll have the best experience ever and it really is true when they talk about 'The Other Iraq', you'll be amazed at the development, it's something to see, honestly!

Cheers!

Evin
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Re: Hi from England

PostAuthor: Nostalgia » Thu Jul 31, 2008 5:36 pm

Welcome, biddy.

Evin, I really respect the fact that you chose not to go through Turkey, I know of many Kurds who despise Turkey yet because of the cost still travel choose to travel to there and then the South of Kurdistan.
The irony is tragic
As more bombs blast down
The silence becomes louder

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Re: Hi from England

PostAuthor: biddy » Fri Aug 01, 2008 1:32 pm

Thanks for the info Evin, much appreciated. Are you sure about the Syria/Iraq crossing? I was under the impression crossing from Syria was a definite NO-NO. Very unsafe and endless checkpoints to stop foreign fighters entering Iraq? Maybe not?

I have to agree with your point Nostalgia. I've spent more than enough time in Turkey already, and no urge to spend more time there, however, looking at the cost of flying into Iraq compared with flying into Turkey and then crossing the border - no contest.

If I do go next spring I may take you up on the meet-up offer. Thanks.

Regards, Biddy.

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Re: Hi from England

PostAuthor: Evin » Fri Aug 01, 2008 4:49 pm

Hi,

I can't speak from experience as I've never travelled the Syria route, I'm just aware that many others have and have obviously lived to tell the tale - it's certainly cheap but I would imagine quite traumatic!

You're right, the route via Turkey is clearly much cheaper than other options. It's just a personal thing, I choose not to travel to Turkey and that's that, but I fully understand when others choose that way.

Whichever route you choose, I hope you go for it and enjoy every minute - I have every confidence you will!

Take Care.

PS. Thanks Nostalgia, it's good to know that you understand where I'm coming from and yes, I'm aware lots of Kurds travel via Turkey but like I said to Biddy, it is a personal thing - I refuse to put a price on my principles (but for sure they don't come cheap, lol!).

Evin
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Re: Hi from England

PostAuthor: nuray » Sun Aug 17, 2008 10:09 pm

hi from türkiye. :)
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Re: Hi from England

PostAuthor: Barış » Sun Aug 24, 2008 7:54 pm

Hi, What's up?
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