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Bukan is located in Iran
Coordinates: 36°31′16″N 46°12′32″E / 36.52111°N 46.20889°E / 36.52111; 46.20889Coordinates: 36°31′16″N 46°12′32″E / 36.52111°N 46.20889°E / 36.52111; 46.20889
Country Iran
ProvinceWest Azerbaijan
 • ParliamentMohammad Qasem Osmani
1,365 m (4,478 ft)
 (2017 Census)
 • Urban
205,000 [1]
Time zoneUTC+3:30 (IRST)
 • Summer (DST)UTC+4:30 (IRDT)
Area code(s)(+98) 44-462

Bukan (Persian: بوکان‎; also Romanized as Bukān, (Kurdish: Bokan‎)[2] is the capital of Bukan County, West Azerbaijan Province, Iran, one of 14 cities and towns in the province. As of 2017, its population was estimated to be near 205,000 in 57,000 families,[3] making it the third most populous city of the province. Its distance from the province′s capital is 184 kilometres. Seventy-five percent of the population is settled in the urban area, while 25% live in the rural area (Iran 2012 Census). This population is almost a homogeneous Kurdish-speaking community.[4]


The name Bukan comes from the Kurdish language.[5]


Pre–Islamic era[edit]

There have been several artefacts discovered in Bukan dating back to between 4100 BC and 4400 BC. These artefacts confirm that Bukan was home to one of the first human settlements on the Iranian Plateau.[6] Bukan was also at the centre of the Mannaean civilization.[7]

In Pre–Islamic times Bukan was a garrison for both the Parthian Empire and the Sassanian Empire There are several ancient sites from this time period in Bukan today.[8] Bukan was also under the control of different empires such as the Middle Assyrian Empire, the Medes, and the Urartu. Environmentally and climatically, Bukan is a highland with snow-capped mountains which looks like as beauty queen of Kurdistan. As regard to the history of the area, according to the archaeological findings, it should be said that from the earliest time the district of Bukan had been populated by ancient tribes, who were inhabited in the foothills of Zagros mountain chain. Archaeologically, the oldest remains that has been recovered here come from Gharagouz (4800-4100 Dalma), Nachit and Gharakend mounds (Bronze Age) The cultural sequence of Bukan, however, has been continued up to Qajar dynasty. There have been recovered more than 150 sites in Bukan.[9]

Islamic era[edit]

Bukan fell into the hands of the Muslims some time around 643.[10] In the 15th century, a local by the name of Amirseifolldin Makari brought the area under his control. Shah Ismail I of the Safavid Dynasty tried several times unsuccessfully to try to bring the area back under his control.[11]

Modern era[edit]

In the year 1853, under the rule of Naser al-Din Shah Qajar, Bukan was no more than a small village.[12]

After the 1979 Iranian Revolution, Bukan was faced with turmoil, and fell under the control of Kurdish opposition groups. Bukan was recaptured by the Iranian Army on 1 January 1984. According to the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, Bukan was the last Kurdish city in Iran to be freed.[13] On 15 April 1988, Bukan was bombarded by the Iraqi Air Force, in which 19 people died and 160 were wounded.[14]

Geographic location[edit]

Bukan is located south of Lake Urmia about 1,300 to 1,370 metres above sea level. It lies in the West Azerbaijan Province of Iran. The town is situated on the eastern bank of the Simineh River (Turkic: Tatāhū Čāy), known locally as Čōmī Bukan, on the road between Saqqez and Miandoab.[15]

View of West Bukan (Iranian Kurdistan) - Hell Shot


The residents of Bukan speak the Sorani dialect of Kurdish and are predominantly Sunni Muslims.[16] In 2012, 93% of the city's population was Muslim.[17] There is a visible minority of Shia Muslims in Bukan, and in the past there were a number of Jewish families living in the city.

Historical sites[edit]

Sardar Castle[edit]

In 1247 Persian Date, Sardar Aziz Khan Mokri from the Sardasht region built a castle near the great reservoir of Bukan that is presently named after its founder as Sardaar Aziz Khaan Castle. The castle was built on top of a hill 50 by 60 meters in diameter and 13 meters tall, and its main building material is 20 by 20 cm bricks with clay mortar and timbers. The castle measures 25 by 30 meters and has 6 daises which rest upon 9-storey columns 2 meters tall and 1 meter in diameter.

During 1325-1351 (A.H) the castle was turned into a police headquarters, post office, and a school respectively and finally was destroyed completely in 1361 A.H and replaced by a newly built structure that used as Basidj (Mobilization) Station.


Football is the most popular sport in the city. Since 2000, Bukan has been host to the professional club Sardar Bukan F.C. which plays in the Iranian League 2 (third tier). In 2017, Sardar Bukan gained a nationwide reputation for its support from the people of Bukan.[18]

Notable people[edit]

Friendship cities[edit]


  1. ^ https://www.amar.org.ir/english
  2. ^ Bukan can be found at GEOnet Names Server, at this link, by opening the Advanced Search box, entering "-3057083" in the "Unique Feature Id" form, and clicking on "Search Database".
  3. ^ "Amar Iran population in 2017".
  4. ^ Rahim Farrokhnia (Iranian Kurds: A Case Study of Bukan) 2006-2012,University Hamadan, Iran
  5. ^ https://web.archive.org/web/20150915193950/http://www.noorlib.ir/View/fa/Book/BookView/Image/19856/1/194?SearchText
  6. ^ https://web.archive.org/web/20150916061058/http://www.irancities.ir/showcity.aspx?code=65&code2=11
  7. ^ محمودپدرام، ۳۰–۳۵
  8. ^ نینا ویکتورینا پیگولوسکایا، شهرهای ایران در روزگار پارتیان و ساسانیان، ۳۳.
  9. ^ hassanzade,Yuosef,izertu historical Monuments (Bukan) 2007,ISBN 9789640401408
  10. ^ https://web.archive.org/web/20150915193950/http://www.noorlib.ir/View/fa/Book/BookView/Image/19856/1/194?SearchText
  11. ^ مردوخ، تاریخ مشاهیرکُرد جلد دوم، ٣٧١-٣٧٢.
  12. ^ http://rojhalat.de/laperekan/nuseran/Kak%20Anwer/bokan/bokan.pdf
  13. ^ https://web.archive.org/web/20150916062004/http://www.farsnews.com/printable.php?nn=13910701001266
  14. ^ https://web.archive.org/web/20160410021425/http://ziryan.ir/NewsDetail.aspx?itemid=13653
  15. ^ "بررسی اهمیت و نقش رودخانه های سیمینه رود و زرینه رود در توسعه بخش کشاورزی آذربایجان غربی" [The Rivers Zarrineh and Simineh, their importance and role in the development of the agricultural sector in Western Azerbaijan] (in Persian). Agriculture Organization of West Azerbaijan. 20 April 2012. Archived from the original on 22 February 2014.
  16. ^ https://www.ethnologue.com/language/ckb
  17. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2018-08-02. Retrieved 2018-01-22.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  18. ^ https://web.archive.org/web/20150915090543/http://kanipress.ir/index.aspx?siteid=12&fkeyid=&siteid=12&pageid=504&newsview=228471

External links[edit]