Kurds in Germany

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Kurds in Germany
Regions with significant populations
650,000-800,000[1][2][3][4] ~1.4% of the population
Kurdish, German, (some knowledge of Turkish, Arabic and Persian)
Majority: Sunni Islam
Minority: Alevism, None
Related ethnic groups
Iranian people

Kurds in Germany refers to people born in or residing in Germany of full or partial Kurdish origin.

There is a large Kurdish community in Germany, numbering around 650,000-800,000[5][3][4] people. This makes the Kurdish community in Germany the largest Kurdish community in the Kurdish diaspora. In addition, most probably the Kurdish community in Germany is expanding as a result of the turmoil in Syria.

Immigration history[edit]

In Germany, Kurdish immigrant workers from Turkey first arrived in the second half of the 1960s.[6] Thousands of Kurdish refugees and political refugees fled from Turkey during the 1970s and onward, from Iraq and Iran during the 1980s and 1990s, and from Syria especially during the Syrian Civil War.

Political activism[edit]

In October 2014, Kurds in Germany marched in protest over the ISIS offensive on the Syrian town of Ayn al-Arab, known in Kurdish as Kobani.[7][8]

On 8 August 2015, thousands of Kurds in Germany marched against Turkish Army air strikes on Kurdish civilians.[9]


Honour killings are also prevalent among the Kurdish diaspora in the West [10][not in citation given] In Germany in March 2009, a Kurdish immigrant from Turkey, Gülsüm S., was killed for a relationship not in keeping with her family's plan for an arranged marriage.[11] Hatun Sürücü was murdered at the age of 23 in Berlin, by her own youngest brother, in an honor killing.[12] In 2016 a Kurdish woman was shot dead at her wedding in Hannover for refusing to marry her cousin in a forced marriage.[13]

According to the German authorities, there were 8 Russian, 57 Turkish, 11 Lithuanian and 4 Kurdish gangs in 2013. The Blick and Nzz claimed that the Kurdish gang/motorcycle club "Sondame", allegedly "fighting" for a free Kurdistan, was formed in Stuttgart, and in 2015, it had about 1,000 members in Germany and Switzerland.[14][15] The group is not well known and its existence is controversial. Other Kurdish motorcycle club and gangs include Median Empire[16] and Red Legion.[17][18][15]

Notable Kurds in Germany[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Kleinschmidt, Harald (2006). Migration, Regional Integration and Human Security: The Formation and Maintenance of Transnational Spaces. Ashgate Publishing, Ltd. ISBN 9780754646464. Retrieved 12 August 2016.
  2. ^ "Camps built in Germany, Austria to win new members for PKK, reports reveal". TodaysZaman. Archived from the original on 9 August 2012. Retrieved 13 November 2014.
  3. ^ a b "Islamisten und Kurden: Brutale Gruppen in Deutschland - WELT". DIE WELT. Retrieved 19 August 2017.
  4. ^ a b https://kurdische-gemeinde.de/zahl-der-kurden-in-deutschland-sprunghaft-angestiegen/ This source says that the Kurdish population in Germany increased to 1.15 million in 2015.
  5. ^ "Camps built in Germany, Austria to win new members for PKK, reports reveal". TodaysZaman. Retrieved 13 November 2014.
  6. ^ "The Kurdish Diaspora". Retrieved 19 August 2017.
  7. ^ "Kurds protested in Germany over 'IS' attacks on the Syrian town of Kobani". DW.DE. Retrieved 13 November 2014.
  8. ^ "Thousands march in France, Germany, Austria to support Kobane Kurds". RFI. Retrieved 13 November 2014.
  9. ^ "Thousands of Kurds in Germany march against Turkish air strikes". Retrieved 19 August 2017.
  10. ^ Palash R. Ghosh. "Honor Crimes in Britain Far More Prevalent than Formerly Thought". International Business Times. Retrieved 2 December 2011.
  11. ^ "Erschlagen, weil sie schwanger war? – Killed, because she was pregnant?". Der Bild.
  12. ^ "BBC NEWS - World - Europe - 'Honour killing' shocks Germany". news.bbc.co.uk. Retrieved 19 August 2017.
  13. ^ "Kurdish woman shot dead at wedding for refusing to marry her cousin". Retrieved 19 August 2017.
  14. ^ Blick. ""Der Auftritt ist sehr aggressiv": Wie gefährlich sind die Kurden-Rocker Sondame?". Retrieved 19 August 2017.
  15. ^ a b Baumgartner, Fabian (17 May 2015). "Rivalisierende Banden in Zürich: Machtkampf zwischen kurdischen "Brüdern" und Rockern". Retrieved 19 August 2017 – via NZZ.
  16. ^ MEYER, MEHMET ATA und OLIVER. ""Median Empire": Kurden-Rocker drohen den Hells Angels". Retrieved 19 August 2017.
  17. ^ Rocker-Info.net (2 April 2015). "Stuttgarter Kurden drohen weiter den United Tribuns". Retrieved 19 August 2017.
  18. ^ Germany, Stuttgarter Zeitung, Stuttgart,. "Red Legion - aktuelle Themen, Nachrichten & Bilder". stuttgarter-zeitung.de. Retrieved 19 August 2017.