Skip to main content

Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK)


kurdish political party.

Established in 1977, the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) advocated the self-determination of Iraqi Kurds through armed struggle. Led by Jalal Talabani, the PUK claims to be more leftist than the rival Democratic Party of Kurdistan (DPK). In 1987 the PUK put an end to ten years of internecine fighting and joined the Kurdistan Front of Iraq with the KDP and six other smaller organizations. After the Gulf War (1991) the PUK shared power with Masʿud Barzani's DPK inside the Kurdish Autonomous Zone, in the parliament elected in May 1992, and in the Kurdish Regional Government formed in Irbil in July 1992. In May 1994 internecine fighting resumed and continued until the Washington Agreement of September 1998. The PUK formed its own government in Sulaymaniyya, and the Kurdish Autonomous Zone was de facto split into two regions. It took four more years to implement the Washington Agreement (1998) and to convene the Kurdish Parliament, which met again for the first time in full session on 4 October 2002. Both the DPK and the PUK approved a draft of Federal Constitution for the future Iraq.

see also democratic party of kurdistan (iraq); kurdish autonomous zone; talabani, jalal.


McDowall, David. A Modern History of the Kurds. London: I. B. Tauris, 1996.

chris kutschera

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK)." Encyclopedia of the Modern Middle East and North Africa. . 26 Mar. 2019 <>.

"Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK)." Encyclopedia of the Modern Middle East and North Africa. . (March 26, 2019).

"Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK)." Encyclopedia of the Modern Middle East and North Africa. . Retrieved March 26, 2019 from

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

The Chicago Manual of Style

American Psychological Association

  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.