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  • Peshmerga or Peshmerge is the term used by Kurds to refer to armed Kurdish fighters. Literally meaning "those who confront death" the Peshmerga forces of Kurdistan have been in existence since the advent of the Kurdish independence movement in the early 1920s, following the collapse of the Ottoman and Qajar empires which had jointly ruled over the area. Peshmerga forces include women in their ranks. Many Kurds will say that all Kurds willing to fight for their rights are Peshmerga. The term remains in contemporary usage, sometimes written as pesh merga in Anglophone media. The Peshmerga has proven to be an effective army, providing security to all minorities. During the US invasion of Iraq the Peshmerga was directly responsible for the capture of Saddam Hussein. They also captured Osama Bin Laden's messenger in 2004, which led to the death of the al-Qaeda chief. The term Peshmerga is also the official name of the armed forces of the Kurdistan Regional Government in the autonomous Kurdistan Region. Wikipedia

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