My Story
Displaced Ezidi crafts and sells 50 lutes during lockdown
Duhok, 2020 – Abas Alias Qulu making the music instrument Tanbur in his tent at Birsev Camp in Zakho – Photo by Ammar Aziz

Ammar Aziz - Duhok

Displaced Ezidi crafts and sells 50 lutes during lockdown

  • 2020-08-05

From February to July, when we were at home during the lockdown, we made about 50 Tanburs and sold all of them.

My name is Abbas Alias Qulu, I am 26 years old. I come from Shingal’s Tal-Banat area and I’ve been living at the Bersiv IDP Camp in Zakho for the last six years.

I’ve been buying and selling the Tanbur the last two years, and gradually started making them myself, only as gifts for my friends in the beginning.

During the curfews and the lockdown, my brother and I started thinking about using that opportunity to make Tanburs, and thanks to God we were successful.

We make three types of Tanbur: Kurmanji, Syrian and Turkish. People from Shingal and other IDPs prefer the Kurmanji type.

The Tanburs we make have reached many places; people have bought them in Syria’s Kurdistan, Turkey’s Kurdistan, and even in Germany.

Depending on its quality, the price of a Tanbur ranges from 20,000 to 125,000 Iraqi Dinars [about $16.80 to $105].

Crafting a Tanbur takes a few days. It’s not a very difficult process, but it requires a lot of patience.

This is our livelihood; we both work and sometimes play the Tanbur and sing.


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