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Kurdish is the language of the Kurdish people; many live in The Islamic Republic of Iran. Roughly 10% of the population there speak it as a first language.

Kurdish is spoken by 15 million people, in at least 26 territories. The largest numbers of speakers live in Iran (where Kurdish is an official language), Turkey, Iraq, and Syria, with significant numbers also living in the territories of the former Soviet Union, and Western Europe (notably Germany).

Many Kurdish people are concerned about the future of their language, an issue which is related to the lack of a recognised Kurdish state (for example see Hassanpour et al., 1996), and restricted use of Kurdish in Turkey and Syria.

Reference: Hassanpour, A., Skutnab-Kangas, T., and Chyet, M. (1996) Non Education of Kurds: A Kurdish Perspective. International Review of Education. 42(4),367-379.

Territory size shows the proportion of all people who speak Kurdish as a first language that live in that territory.

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