|Name||Alaya Rengîn ("The Colourful Flag")|
|Adopted||1920s by Xoybûn|
1992 by Kurdistan Region
|Design||A red, white, and green tricolour, with a yellow 21 rayed sun in the center (Kurdish Sun).|
The Flag of Kurdistan (Kurdish: ,Alaya Kurdistanê) was created by Xoybûn during the Ararat rebellion against Turkey in 1928, where it was hoisted by thousands of Kurdish rebels. The flag was subsequently presented to the European powers at the Versailles Peace Conference. When the Republic of Kurdistan in Iran was proclaimed in 1947, Mustafa Barzani hoisted the flag in Mahabad and the flag was adopted as the official flag of Kurdistan. Kurdistan Region of Iraq has since adopted the same flag as the official flag.
The Kurdish flag is the most important symbol of cohesive Kurdish identity. Since it was first hoisted in 1946 to represent the concept of an independent Kurdistan (called the Republic of Mahabad and founded in Iranian territory) it has become a symbol of the national identity of Kurds.
The main characteristic of the flag is the blazing golden sun emblem (Roj in Kurdish) at its center. The emblem's sun disk has 21 rays, equal in size and shape, with the single odd ray at top and the two even rays on the bottom. Number 21 is a venerated number, standing for rebirth/renaissance in the ancient and native Kurdish religion of Yazdanism and its modern offshoots. The golden sun emblem has been in use by Kurds since antiquity.
|Symbolizes the blood of the martyrs and the continued struggle for freedom and dignity.|
|Expresses the beauty and landscapes of Kurdistan. Life and vitality.|
|Represents the source of life and light of the people. The sun is an ancient symbol and twenty one sunbeams represent March 21, Newroz.|
|Represent peace and equality.|
In Fall 2006 the Iraqi Kurdish leadership gave orders for Kurdish officials to stop flying the Iraqi flag under decree number 60 "to hoist the flag of Iraqi Kurdistan". Masoud Barzani issued orders that the Ba'athist flag should be lowered and all regions in Iraqi Kurdistan should "hoist only the Kurdistan flag" because the symbols of Ba'athism were associated with the Anfal genocide where 180,000 people lost their lives. When the Ba'athist symbols were removed from the Iraqi flag in 2008, the KRG hoisted the Iraqi flag to fly alongside the Kurdish flag, reported to still be the practice as of March 2013. Flying the Iraqi flag side by side with the Kurdish flag is symbolic of their acceptance of Iraqi federalism.
The flag first appeared during the movement for Kurdish independence from the Ottoman Empire and resembles an earlier version created by the Xoybûn (Khoyboon) organization, active in the Ararat rebellion of 1930, and flown by the break-away Republic of Ararat during the period 1927-1931. The flag appeared then again in 1932 and in the media where one of its creators described it as red, white and green with a sun in the middle.
The flag appeared in Kurdish media throughout the 1990s with MED TV, Kurdsat, Kurdistan TV and their affiliates broadcasting with the flag appearing frequently in their programming allowing it to become a symbol of Kurdish statehood. A document dealing with the adaptation to international flag standards of the National Flag of Kurdistan was prepared by Mehrdad Izady and Bijhan Eliasi in 1998.