The City of Hewler (Erbil) | Ancient & Modern History |


Hello everyone and welcome to another video. Today, we will talk about the City of Hewler,
internationally known as the city of Erbil. This is our fourth Kurdish city video,
Now if you have missed our previous videos about Kurdish cities, you will find a link
to them on the top of the screen right now, so be sure to check that out. As usual, don’t forget to like this video,
comment your opinion down below and subscribe to the channel, also hit the follow button
on Instagram, make sure you follow us there to catch up with Kurdish facts and beautiful pictures and news about this channel. One last thing before we start with the video,
If you are from Hewler, make sure you comment on this video, let’s see how many Hewleri
we have on here. Now without further ado, let’s get into
the video. The city of Erbil, by Kurds often called Hewler
is an ancient city, probably the oldest city today which still is populated. With it’s 1,2 million inhabitants, the city
marks a both strategic and economicly important center in Kurdistan alongside being the capital
of the local KRG government Kurdistan Regional Government. The city’s official name, Erbil, probably
comes from Urbilum, which was what the Sumerians called the city about 3000 BC, during this
time, the city was a center for many ancient Mesopotamian gods, not at least Innana, the
god of lust, war, justice and political power. The Kurdish name for the city, Hewler, appears
to be a corruption of the name Arbel by a series of metatheses of consonants leading
to a change of the name during a long period of time. The city of Hewler, is located in southern
Kurdistan, which at the moment is occupied by Iraq. Except the 1,2 million inhabitants, the Erbil
Governorate has a population of at least 2,3 million people. Settlements in Hewler, inhabited by people
can be dated back to 5th millennium BC, making the city one of the oldest still inhabited
areas in the world. The heart of the city, contains of the ancient
Citadel of Erbil, which according to most sources was the main centrum of the city in
ancient times. The first discoveries of the city comes from
the archives in the city of Ebla in modern Syria. The records mentions two journeys by a messenger
from Ebla to the city of Irbilum around 2300 B.C. The city was back then in control of the Akkadian
Empire but would in time, around 2150 BC fall into the control of the Gutian people, one
of the Kurdish ancestors. In time, the city would fall into Assyrian
control within three different eras, the old Assyrian empire, the middle Assyrian empire
and the neo Assyrian empire. The Median king Cyaxares, which was the most
successful ruler of the pre-kurdish Median Empire would eventually conquer Nineveh with
help of an ancient Iranian tribe called The Sagartians. After the gaining of new lands, Cyaxares would
reward this ancient tribe by offering them settlements within modern Hewler and Kirkuk. Many years later, the very famous battle of
gaugamela took place in the outskirts of Hewler, marking a very strategic and symbolic battle
between the armies of Alexander The Great and King Darius III of Persia. Hewler would eventually become part of Alexanders
empire and after the death of Alexander the great in 323 BC, the city fell into the hands
of the Seleucid Empire, following a number of other rules before the Iranian Sassanid
Empire would rule the area and the city until 651 A.D. The main religion in Hewler during this time
was Zoroastrisanism and Christianity. However, soon the Arabs came from the south,
with a whole new religion with themselves called Islam. As Islam within time became the dominant religion
in the area, diffrent people calling themselves muslims also got benefits in the society before
others. The Kurdish sunni muslim tribe of Hecbani
had several governors placed within the city of Hewler between 10th century and the 12th
century. In the year of 1237, Hewler was attacked by
the Mongols. In this attack, the mongols successfully plundered
the lower town of Hewler, however they were soon forced to retreat as the ruling caliphate
reinforced the area with a much larger army. The mongols would however get back as they
in 1258 captured Baghdad and defeated the local Begtegenid rulers, who’s ruler claimed
that the Kurdish garrison would follow their surrender, the Kurds however refused something
that would lead to a six month long siege of Hewler by the Mongols. The ruling Hulagu clan of the mongols then
appoined an Assyrian Christian governour of Hewler and the Orthodox Syriacs of Hewler
were allowed to build a church in the city. However, the good relations between the mongols
and the Christian in Hewler would turn around as the Mongolian Ilkhanate
started persucations against both Christians, Jews and Buddhists under the rule of Mongolian
Emir Nawruz. Kurdish tribemens reportingly participated
in Mongolian massacres of the Assyrian people in first of july 1310, wether if it was a
minor or major participation is further unknown. Eventually the city would come under the hands
of the Ottoman Turks and for 400 years be part of the Mosul Vilayet until the Kurdish
and Ottomans were defeated in World War 1. The city of Hewler stands on a very important location, right on the route between Baghdad
and Mosul. This made Hewler an important trading center
during the middle ages, which would be vital for the cities future expansion into a greater
city that it is today. Today, the Kurds are the majority of the total
population of Hewler followed up by Arabs, Assyrians, Turkmens, Armenians and smaller
groups of Iranians and Mandeanans. Even though Hewler was implemented into a
future Kurdish self-ruling after negotiations between Mustafa Barzani and Saddam Hussein,
the city was under the dictators grip until the Kurdish raparin revolution in 1991, we
will leave a link on top of the screen for our documentary about that revolution right
now. In the 90s, Hewler became one of the centers
in the 3 years long kurdish civil war between the two main parties of PUK and KDP. The city of Hewler was captured by the KDP
under Iraqi assistance in 1996. To answer on this action, the PUK created
an alternative kurdish government in the city of Slemani. The civil war would cost at least 6000 deaths
of both sides and eventually the war ended as the both sides met and signed a peace treaty
between themselves, dealing on the future power of Iraqi-occupied Kurdistan. Hewler later became one of the iconic cities
for the resistance against the Iraqi baath-regime as America invaded Iraq in 2003. The city was targeted several times after
the fall of Baath-regime allegetly by the Islamic terror organization Ansar-Al-Sunnah
which killed 109 people during the 2004 Hewler bombings and another 60 people in the suicide
bombing 4th of may 2005. The same year, 2005, the international airport
of Erbil was opened. Since then, the world has looked at Iraq as
a country of war, however while middle and southern Iraq has been preoccupied by handeling
its diffrencies, mostly by conflicts, the iraqi-occupied Kurdistan hs been under constant
development in a rebuilding process of a country. But the development of KRG, the regional government
of Kurdistan, has also faced critizism among the own people, not at least for corruption. Now, if you want a video about this, make
sure like this video and comment on this video The big investments on KRG development created
a whole new world of business and foreign people coming to the city of Hewler. This also made the city a key point in the
war against ISIS as one of the main reasons america went into the war, was that ISIS were
closing in on the city, something that endangered a lot of foreign citizens, not at least american
ones. This was, alongside the situation with James
Foley and the execution of other American citizen the main reasons for America joining
in the battle against ISIS. Further on, we plan a very seperate video
about the citadel of Hewler, where want to go more deeply into the architect and history
of the citadel itself. Shortly the citadal is one of KRGs most visited
tourist attractions, with a history that dates back to the beginning of the Hewler civilisation
startup since this citadel once where the main city of Hewler itself. South of the citadel we have the famous Qaysari
Bazaar, which is from the 13th century AD. In this Bazaar you can buy everything from
honey, yoghurt and cheese to rugs, paintings and televisions. Today, the Citadel has been inscribed on the
World Heritage List, this was made in 21th of June 2014. The city of Hewler has throughout time been
under diffrent people, diffrent rules, diffrent kingdoms and dynasties. Looking from the beginning to today, it has
been under kurdish infuence for most of the years and is it is likely that this will be
the case for the future of the city. Now, that’s it for this video, if you like,
give it a thumbs up, make sure you comment your opinion down below, let us what city
or village of Kurdistan that you want us to talk about in the future and don’t forget
to subscribe to the channel and we will see you next time.

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