Home      Discussion      Topics      Dictionary      Almanac
Signup       Login
Uzbekistan

Uzbekistan

Overview
Uzbekistan , officially the Republic of Uzbekistan (‘zbekiston Respublikasi or Ўзбекистон Республикаси, O'zbekiston Respublikasi) is a doubly landlocked country in Central Asia
Central Asia
Central Asia is a core region of the Asian continent from the Caspian Sea in the west, China in the east, Afghanistan in the south, and Russia in the north...

 and one of the six independent Turkic states. It shares borders with Kazakhstan
Kazakhstan
Kazakhstan , officially the Republic of Kazakhstan, is a transcontinental country in Central Asia and Eastern Europe. Ranked as the ninth largest country in the world, it is also the world's largest landlocked country; its territory of is greater than Western Europe...

 to the west and to the north, Kyrgyzstan
Kyrgyzstan
Kyrgyzstan , officially the Kyrgyz Republic is one of the world's six independent Turkic states . Located in Central Asia, landlocked and mountainous, Kyrgyzstan is bordered by Kazakhstan to the north, Uzbekistan to the west, Tajikistan to the southwest and China to the east...

 and Tajikistan
Tajikistan
Tajikistan , officially the Republic of Tajikistan , is a mountainous landlocked country in Central Asia. Afghanistan borders it to the south, Uzbekistan to the west, Kyrgyzstan to the north, and China to the east....

 to the east, and Afghanistan
Afghanistan
Afghanistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, is a landlocked country located in the centre of Asia, forming South Asia, Central Asia and the Middle East. With a population of about 29 million, it has an area of , making it the 42nd most populous and 41st largest nation in the world...

 and Turkmenistan
Turkmenistan
Turkmenistan , formerly also known as Turkmenia is one of the Turkic states in Central Asia. Until 1991, it was a constituent republic of the Soviet Union, the Turkmen Soviet Socialist Republic . Turkmenistan is one of the six independent Turkic states...

 to the south. Prior to 1991, it was part of the Soviet Union
Soviet Union
The Soviet Union , officially the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics , was a constitutionally socialist state that existed in Eurasia between 1922 and 1991....

. Uzbekistan is an observing member of the Turkic Council
Turkic Council
The Turkic Council is an international organization comprising Turkic countries. It was founded on 3 October 2009 in Nakhchivan. The General Secretariat is in İstanbul, Turkey. The member countries are Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Turkey. The remaining two Turkic states, Turkmenistan and...

.

Once part of the Persian Samanid and later Timurid empires, the region was conquered in the early 16th century by Uzbek nomads
Uzbeks
The Uzbeks are a Turkic ethnic group in Central Asia. They comprise the majority population of Uzbekistan, and large populations can also be found in Afghanistan, Tajikstan, Kyrgyzstan, Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan, Russia, Pakistan, Mongolia and the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region of China...

, who spoke an Eastern Turkic language.
Discussion
Ask a question about 'Uzbekistan'
Start a new discussion about 'Uzbekistan'
Answer questions from other users
Full Discussion Forum
 
Unanswered Questions
Encyclopedia
Uzbekistan , officially the Republic of Uzbekistan (‘zbekiston Respublikasi or Ўзбекистон Республикаси, O'zbekiston Respublikasi) is a doubly landlocked country in Central Asia
Central Asia
Central Asia is a core region of the Asian continent from the Caspian Sea in the west, China in the east, Afghanistan in the south, and Russia in the north...

 and one of the six independent Turkic states. It shares borders with Kazakhstan
Kazakhstan
Kazakhstan , officially the Republic of Kazakhstan, is a transcontinental country in Central Asia and Eastern Europe. Ranked as the ninth largest country in the world, it is also the world's largest landlocked country; its territory of is greater than Western Europe...

 to the west and to the north, Kyrgyzstan
Kyrgyzstan
Kyrgyzstan , officially the Kyrgyz Republic is one of the world's six independent Turkic states . Located in Central Asia, landlocked and mountainous, Kyrgyzstan is bordered by Kazakhstan to the north, Uzbekistan to the west, Tajikistan to the southwest and China to the east...

 and Tajikistan
Tajikistan
Tajikistan , officially the Republic of Tajikistan , is a mountainous landlocked country in Central Asia. Afghanistan borders it to the south, Uzbekistan to the west, Kyrgyzstan to the north, and China to the east....

 to the east, and Afghanistan
Afghanistan
Afghanistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, is a landlocked country located in the centre of Asia, forming South Asia, Central Asia and the Middle East. With a population of about 29 million, it has an area of , making it the 42nd most populous and 41st largest nation in the world...

 and Turkmenistan
Turkmenistan
Turkmenistan , formerly also known as Turkmenia is one of the Turkic states in Central Asia. Until 1991, it was a constituent republic of the Soviet Union, the Turkmen Soviet Socialist Republic . Turkmenistan is one of the six independent Turkic states...

 to the south. Prior to 1991, it was part of the Soviet Union
Soviet Union
The Soviet Union , officially the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics , was a constitutionally socialist state that existed in Eurasia between 1922 and 1991....

. Uzbekistan is an observing member of the Turkic Council
Turkic Council
The Turkic Council is an international organization comprising Turkic countries. It was founded on 3 October 2009 in Nakhchivan. The General Secretariat is in İstanbul, Turkey. The member countries are Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Turkey. The remaining two Turkic states, Turkmenistan and...

.

Once part of the Persian Samanid and later Timurid empires, the region was conquered in the early 16th century by Uzbek nomads
Uzbeks
The Uzbeks are a Turkic ethnic group in Central Asia. They comprise the majority population of Uzbekistan, and large populations can also be found in Afghanistan, Tajikstan, Kyrgyzstan, Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan, Russia, Pakistan, Mongolia and the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region of China...

, who spoke an Eastern Turkic language. Most of Uzbekistan’s population today belong to the Uzbek ethnic group and speak the Uzbek language
Uzbek language
Uzbek is a Turkic language and the official language of Uzbekistan. It has about 25.5 million native speakers, and it is spoken by the Uzbeks in Uzbekistan and elsewhere in Central Asia...

, one of the family of Turkic languages
Turkic languages
The Turkic languages constitute a language family of at least thirty five languages, spoken by Turkic peoples across a vast area from Eastern Europe and the Mediterranean to Siberia and Western China, and are considered to be part of the proposed Altaic language family.Turkic languages are spoken...

.

Uzbekistan was incorporated into the Russian Empire
Russian Empire
The Russian Empire was a state that existed from 1721 until the Russian Revolution of 1917. It was the successor to the Tsardom of Russia and the predecessor of the Soviet Union...

 in the 19th century and in 1924 became a constituent republic of the Soviet Union, known as the Uzbek Soviet Socialist Republic (Uzbek SSR
Uzbek SSR
The Uzbek Soviet Socialist Republic , also known as the Uzbek SSR for short, was one of the republics of the Soviet Union since its creation in 1924...

). It has been an independent republic since December 1991.

Uzbekistan's economy relies mainly on commodity production, including cotton
Cotton
Cotton is a soft, fluffy staple fiber that grows in a boll, or protective capsule, around the seeds of cotton plants of the genus Gossypium. The fiber is almost pure cellulose. The botanical purpose of cotton fiber is to aid in seed dispersal....

, gold
Gold
Gold is a chemical element with the symbol Au and an atomic number of 79. Gold is a dense, soft, shiny, malleable and ductile metal. Pure gold has a bright yellow color and luster traditionally considered attractive, which it maintains without oxidizing in air or water. Chemically, gold is a...

, uranium
Uranium
Uranium is a silvery-white metallic chemical element in the actinide series of the periodic table, with atomic number 92. It is assigned the chemical symbol U. A uranium atom has 92 protons and 92 electrons, of which 6 are valence electrons...

, potassium
Potassium
Potassium is the chemical element with the symbol K and atomic number 19. Elemental potassium is a soft silvery-white alkali metal that oxidizes rapidly in air and is very reactive with water, generating sufficient heat to ignite the hydrogen emitted in the reaction.Potassium and sodium are...

, and natural gas
Natural gas
Natural gas is a naturally occurring gas mixture consisting primarily of methane, typically with 0–20% higher hydrocarbons . It is found associated with other hydrocarbon fuel, in coal beds, as methane clathrates, and is an important fuel source and a major feedstock for fertilizers.Most natural...

. Despite the declared objective of transition
Transition economy
A transition economy or transitional economy is an economy which is changing from a centrally planned economy to a free market. Transition economies undergo economic liberalization, where market forces set prices rather than a central planning organization and trade barriers are removed,...

 to a market economy
Market economy
A market economy is an economy in which the prices of goods and services are determined in a free price system. This is often contrasted with a state-directed or planned economy. Market economies can range from hypothetically pure laissez-faire variants to an assortment of real-world mixed...

, Uzbekistan continues to maintain rigid economic controls, which often repel foreign investors. The policy of gradual, strictly controlled transition has nevertheless produced beneficial results in the form of economic recovery after 1995. Uzbekistan's domestic policies on human rights and individual freedoms are often criticised by international organizations.

Geography



Uzbekistan has an area
Area
Area is a quantity that expresses the extent of a two-dimensional surface or shape in the plane. Area can be understood as the amount of material with a given thickness that would be necessary to fashion a model of the shape, or the amount of paint necessary to cover the surface with a single coat...

 of 447400 square kilometres (172,742.1 sq mi). It is the 56th largest country in the world by area and the 42nd by population. Among the CIS
CIS
CIS usually refers to the Commonwealth of Independent States, a modern political entity consisting of eleven former Soviet Union republics.The acronym CIS may also refer to:-Organizations:...

 countries, it is the 5th largest by area and the 3rd largest by population.

Uzbekistan lies between latitudes 37°
37th parallel north
The 37th parallel north is a circle of latitude that is 37 degrees north of the Earth's equatorial plane. It crosses Europe, the Mediterranean Sea, Africa, Asia, the Pacific Ocean, North America, and the Atlantic Ocean....

 and 46° N
46th parallel north
The 46th parallel north is a circle of latitude that is 46 degrees north of the Earth's equatorial plane. It crosses Europe, Asia, the Pacific Ocean, North America, and the Atlantic Ocean....

, and longitudes 56°
56th meridian east
The meridian 56° east of Greenwich is a line of longitude that extends from the North Pole across the Arctic Ocean, Europe, Asia, the Indian Ocean, the Southern Ocean, and Antarctica to the South Pole....

 and 74° E
74th meridian east
The meridian 74° east of Greenwich is a line of longitude that extends from the North Pole across the Arctic Ocean, Asia, the Indian Ocean, the Southern Ocean, and Antarctica to the South Pole....

. It stretches 1425 kilometres (885.5 mi) from west to east and 930 kilometres (577.9 mi) from north to south. Bordering Kazakhstan
Kazakhstan
Kazakhstan , officially the Republic of Kazakhstan, is a transcontinental country in Central Asia and Eastern Europe. Ranked as the ninth largest country in the world, it is also the world's largest landlocked country; its territory of is greater than Western Europe...

 and the Aral Sea
Aral Sea
The Aral Sea was a lake that lay between Kazakhstan in the north and Karakalpakstan, an autonomous region of Uzbekistan, in the south...

 to the north and northwest, Turkmenistan
Turkmenistan
Turkmenistan , formerly also known as Turkmenia is one of the Turkic states in Central Asia. Until 1991, it was a constituent republic of the Soviet Union, the Turkmen Soviet Socialist Republic . Turkmenistan is one of the six independent Turkic states...

 to the southwest, Tajikistan
Tajikistan
Tajikistan , officially the Republic of Tajikistan , is a mountainous landlocked country in Central Asia. Afghanistan borders it to the south, Uzbekistan to the west, Kyrgyzstan to the north, and China to the east....

 to the southeast, and Kyrgyzstan
Kyrgyzstan
Kyrgyzstan , officially the Kyrgyz Republic is one of the world's six independent Turkic states . Located in Central Asia, landlocked and mountainous, Kyrgyzstan is bordered by Kazakhstan to the north, Uzbekistan to the west, Tajikistan to the southwest and China to the east...

 to the northeast, Uzbekistan is not only one of the larger Central Asian states but also the only Central Asian state to border all the other four. Uzbekistan also shares a short border (less than 150 km or 93 mi) with Afghanistan
Afghanistan
Afghanistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, is a landlocked country located in the centre of Asia, forming South Asia, Central Asia and the Middle East. With a population of about 29 million, it has an area of , making it the 42nd most populous and 41st largest nation in the world...

 to the south.

Uzbekistan is a dry, landlocked
Landlocked
A landlocked country is a country entirely enclosed by land, or whose only coastlines lie on closed seas. There are 48 landlocked countries in the world, including partially recognized states...

 country; it is one of two doubly landlocked countries in the world, i.e., a country completely surrounded by landlocked countries – the other being Liechtenstein
Liechtenstein
The Principality of Liechtenstein is a doubly landlocked alpine country in Central Europe, bordered by Switzerland to the west and south and by Austria to the east. Its area is just over , and it has an estimated population of 35,000. Its capital is Vaduz. The biggest town is Schaan...

. Less than 10% of its territory is intensively cultivated irrigated land in river valleys and oases. The rest is vast desert (Kyzyl Kum
Kyzyl Kum
The Kyzyl Kum , also called Qyzylqum, is the 11th largest desert in the world. Its name means Red Sand in Turkic languages. It is located in Central Asia in the doab between the rivers Amu Darya and Syr Darya, and is divided between Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan...

) and mountains.

The highest point in Uzbekistan is the Khazret Sultan
Khazret Sultan
Khazret Sultan is a mountain and the highest point of Uzbekistan, with an altitude of 4,643 metres . It is located on the border between Uzbekistan and Tajikistan, in Surkhandarya Province, in the Uzbek part of the Gissar Range...

, located at 4643 metres (15,232.9 ft) above sea level, located in the southern part of the Gissar Range
Gissar Range
Gissar Range is a mountain range in Central Asia, in the western part of the Pamir-Alay system, stretching over 200 km in the general east-west direction across the territory of Tajikistan and Uzbekistan...

 in Surkhandarya Province, on the border with Tajikistan, just north-west of Dushanbe
Dushanbe
-Economy:Coal, lead, and arsenic are mined nearby in the cities of Nurek and Kulob allowing for the industrialization of Dushanbe. The Nurek Dam, the world's highest as of 2008, generates 95% of Tajikistan's electricity, and another dam, the Roghun Dam, is planned on the Vakhsh River...

 (formerly called Peak of the 22nd Congress of the Communist Party).

The climate
Climate
Climate encompasses the statistics of temperature, humidity, atmospheric pressure, wind, rainfall, atmospheric particle count and other meteorological elemental measurements in a given region over long periods...

 in the Republic of Uzbekistan is continental, with little precipitation
Precipitation (meteorology)
In meteorology, precipitation In meteorology, precipitation In meteorology, precipitation (also known as one of the classes of hydrometeors, which are atmospheric water phenomena is any product of the condensation of atmospheric water vapor that falls under gravity. The main forms of precipitation...

 expected annually (100–200 millimeters, or 3.9–7.9 inches). The average summer high temperature
Temperature
Temperature is a physical property of matter that quantitatively expresses the common notions of hot and cold. Objects of low temperature are cold, while various degrees of higher temperatures are referred to as warm or hot...

 tends to be 40 °C , while the average winter low temperature is around −23 °C .

Major cities include Andijan
Andijan
Andijan or Andizhan is the fourth-largest city in Uzbekistan, and the capital of the Andijan Province. It is located in the east of the country, at , in the Fergana Valley, near the border with Kyrgyzstan on the Andijan-Say River...

, Bukhara
Bukhara
Bukhara , from the Soghdian βuxārak , is the capital of the Bukhara Province of Uzbekistan. The nation's fifth-largest city, it has a population of 263,400 . The region around Bukhara has been inhabited for at least five millennia, and the city has existed for half that time...

, Samarkand
Samarkand
Although a Persian-speaking region, it was not united politically with Iran most of the times between the disintegration of the Seleucid Empire and the Arab conquest . In the 6th century it was within the domain of the Turkic kingdom of the Göktürks.At the start of the 8th century Samarkand came...

, Namangan
Namangan
Namangan is the third-largest city in Uzbekistan . It is the capital of Namangan Province, in the northern edge of Fergana Valley of north-eastern Uzbekistan.-Geography:...

 and the capital Tashkent
Tashkent
Tashkent is the capital of Uzbekistan and of the Tashkent Province. The officially registered population of the city in 2008 was about 2.2 million. Unofficial sources estimate the actual population may be as much as 4.45 million.-Early Islamic History:...

.

Environment



Decades of questionable Soviet policies in pursuit of greater cotton
Cotton
Cotton is a soft, fluffy staple fiber that grows in a boll, or protective capsule, around the seeds of cotton plants of the genus Gossypium. The fiber is almost pure cellulose. The botanical purpose of cotton fiber is to aid in seed dispersal....

 production have resulted in a catastrophic scenario. The agricultural industry appears to be the main contributor to the pollution and devastation of the air and water in the country.

The Aral Sea disaster is a classic example. The Aral Sea used to be the fourth-largest inland sea
Sea
A sea generally refers to a large body of salt water, but the term is used in other contexts as well. Most commonly, it means a large expanse of saline water connected with an ocean, and is commonly used as a synonym for ocean...

 on Earth
Earth
Earth is the third planet from the Sun, and the densest and fifth-largest of the eight planets in the Solar System. It is also the largest of the Solar System's four terrestrial planets...

, acting as an influencing factor in the air moisture. Since the 1960s, the decade when the misuse of the Aral Sea water began, it has shrunk to less than 50% of its former area and decreased in volume threefold. Reliable or even approximate data have not been collected, stored or provided by any organization or official agency. Much of the water was and still continues to be used for the irrigation of cotton fields, a crop that requires a large amount of water to grow.

The numbers of animal deaths and human refugees from the area around the sea can only be guessed. The question of who is responsible for the crisis remains open – the Soviet scientists and politicians who directed the distribution of water during the 1960s, or the post-Soviet politicians who did not allocate sufficient funding for the building of dams and irrigation systems.

Due to the virtually insoluble Aral Sea problem, high salinity
Salinity
Salinity is the saltiness or dissolved salt content of a body of water. It is a general term used to describe the levels of different salts such as sodium chloride, magnesium and calcium sulfates, and bicarbonates...

 and contamination of the soil with heavy elements are especially widespread in Karakalpakstan, the region of Uzbekistan adjacent to the Aral Sea. The bulk of the nation's water resources is used for farming, which accounts for nearly 94% of the water
Water
Water is a chemical substance with the chemical formula H2O. A water molecule contains one oxygen and two hydrogen atoms connected by covalent bonds. Water is a liquid at ambient conditions, but it often co-exists on Earth with its solid state, ice, and gaseous state . Water also exists in a...

 usage and contributes to high soil salinity. Heavy use of pesticide
Pesticide
Pesticides are substances or mixture of substances intended for preventing, destroying, repelling or mitigating any pest.A pesticide may be a chemical unicycle, biological agent , antimicrobial, disinfectant or device used against any pest...

s and fertilizer
Fertilizer
Fertilizer is any organic or inorganic material of natural or synthetic origin that is added to a soil to supply one or more plant nutrients essential to the growth of plants. A recent assessment found that about 40 to 60% of crop yields are attributable to commercial fertilizer use...

s for cotton growing further aggravates soil pollution.

History




The earliest Bronze Age
Bronze Age
The Bronze Age is a period characterized by the use of copper and its alloy bronze as the chief hard materials in the manufacture of some implements and weapons. Chronologically, it stands between the Stone Age and Iron Age...

 colonists of the Tarim Basin were people of Caucasoid physical type who entered probably from the north and west and probably spoke languages that could be classified as Pre- or Proto-Tocharian
Tocharians
The Tocharians were the Tocharian-speaking inhabitants of the Tarim Basin, making them the easternmost speakers of Indo-European languages in antiquity. They were known as, or at least closely related to, the Yuezhi of Chinese sources...

, ancestral to the Indo-European Tocharian languages documented later in the Tarim Basin. These early settlers occupied the northern and eastern parts of the Tarim Basin, where their graves have yielded mummies dated about 1800 BC. They participated in a cultural world centered on the eastern steppes of central Eurasia, including modern northeastern Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, and Tajikistan.

At the eastern end of the Tarim Basin, people of Mongoloid physical type began to be buried in cemeteries such as Yanbulaq some centuries later, during the later second or early first millennium BC. About the same time, Iranian-speaking people moved into the Tarim Basin from the steppes to the west. Their linguistic heritage and perhaps their physical remains are found in the southern and western portions of the Tarim. These three populations interacted, as the linguistic and archaeological evidence reviewed by Mallory and Mair makes clear, and then Turkic people arrived and were added to the mix.

The first people known to inhabit Central Asia were Iranian
Iranian peoples
The Iranian peoples are an Indo-European ethnic-linguistic group, consisting of the speakers of Iranian languages, a major branch of the Indo-European language family, as such forming a branch of Indo-European-speaking peoples...

 nomads who arrived from the northern grasslands of what is now Uzbekistan sometime in the first millennium BC. These nomads, who spoke Iranian dialects, settled in Central Asia and began to build an extensive irrigation system along the rivers of the region. At this time, cities such as Bukhoro (Bukhara) and Samarqand (Samarkand) began to appear as centers of government and culture. By the 5th century BC, the Bactrian, Soghdian
Sogdiana
Sogdiana or Sogdia was the ancient civilization of an Iranian people and a province of the Achaemenid Empire, eighteenth in the list on the Behistun Inscription of Darius the Great . Sogdiana is "listed" as the second of the "good lands and countries" that Ahura Mazda created...

, and Tokharian
Yuezhi
The Yuezhi, or Rouzhi , also known as the Da Yuezhi or Da Rouzhi , were an ancient Central Asian people....

 states dominated the region.

As China began to develop its silk trade with the West, Iranian cities took advantage of this commerce by becoming centers of trade. Using an extensive network of cities and settlements in the province of Mawarannahr (a name given the region after the Arab conquest) in Uzbekistan and farther east in what is today China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, the Soghdian intermediaries became the wealthiest of these Iranian merchants. Because of this trade on what became known as the Silk Route, Bukhoro and Samarqand eventually became extremely wealthy cities, and at times Mawarannahr was one of the most influential and powerful Persian provinces of antiquity.
Alexander the Great conquered Sogdiana and Bactria in 327 BC, marrying Roxana
Roxana
Roxana sometimes Roxane, was a Bactrian noble and a wife of Alexander the Great. She was born earlier than the year 343 BC, though the precise date remains uncertain....

, daughter of a local Bactrian chieftain. The conquest was supposedly of little help to Alexander as popular resistance was fierce, causing Alexander's army to be bogged down in the region that became the northern part of Hellenistic Greco-Bactrian Kingdom
Greco-Bactrian Kingdom
The Greco-Bactrian Kingdom was the easternmost part of the Hellenistic world, covering Bactria and Sogdiana in Central Asia from 250 to 125 BC...

. For many centuries the region of Uzbekistan was ruled by Persian empires, including the Parthian
Parthian Empire
The Parthian Empire , also known as the Arsacid Empire , was a major Iranian political and cultural power in ancient Persia...

 and Sassanid Empires.

In the 8th century Transoxiana (territory between the Amudarya and Syrdarya rivers) was conquered by Arabs.

In the 9th – 10th centuries Transoxiana was included into Samanid State.

The Mongol
Mongol Empire
The Mongol Empire , initially named as Greater Mongol State was a great empire during the 13th and 14th centuries...

 conquest under Genghis Khan
Genghis Khan
Genghis Khan , born Temujin and occasionally known by his temple name Taizu , was the founder and Great Khan of the Mongol Empire, which became the largest contiguous empire in history after his death....

 during the 13th century, would bring about a dramatic change to the region. The brutal conquest and widespread genocide characteristic of the Mongols almost entirely exterminated the indigenous Indo-Persian (Scythian) people of the region, their culture and heritage being superseded by that of the Mongolian
Mongols
Mongols ) are a Central-East Asian ethnic group that lives mainly in the countries of Mongolia, China, and Russia. In China, ethnic Mongols can be found mainly in the central north region of China such as Inner Mongolia...

-Turkic peoples
Turkic peoples
The Turkic peoples are peoples residing in northern, central and western Asia, southern Siberia and northwestern China and parts of eastern Europe. They speak languages belonging to the Turkic language family. They share, to varying degrees, certain cultural traits and historical backgrounds...

 who settled the region thereafter.

Following the death of Genghis Khan in 1227, his empire was divided among his four sons and his family members. Despite the potential for serious fragmentation, Mongol law of the Mongol Empire maintained orderly succession for several more generations, and control of most of Mawarannahr stayed in the hands of direct descendants of Chagatai Khan
Chagatai Khan
Chagatai Khan was the second son of Genghis Khan and first khan and origin of the names of the Chagatai Khanate, Chagatai language and Chagatai Turks....

, the second son of Genghis Khan. Orderly succession, prosperity, and internal peace prevailed in the Chaghatai lands, and the Mongol Empire as a whole remained strong and united.

In the early fourteenth century, however, as the empire began to break up into its constituent parts, the Chaghatai territory also was disrupted as the princes of various tribal groups competed for influence. One tribal chieftain, Timur
Timur
Timur , historically known as Tamerlane in English , was a 14th-century conqueror of West, South and Central Asia, and the founder of the Timurid dynasty in Central Asia, and great-great-grandfather of Babur, the founder of the Mughal Dynasty, which survived as the Mughal Empire in India until...

 (Tamerlane), emerged from these struggles in the 1380s as the dominant force in Mawarannahr. Although he was not a descendant of Chinggis, Timur became the de facto ruler of Mawarannahr and proceeded to conquer all of western Central Asia, Iran, Asia Minor, and the southern steppe region north of the Aral Sea. He also invaded Russia and India before dying during an invasion of China in 1405.

Timur initiated the last flowering of Mawarannahr by gathering in his capital, Samarqand, numerous artisans and scholars from the lands he had conquered. By supporting such people, Timur imbued his empire with a very rich culture. During Timur's reign and the reigns of his immediate descendants, a wide range of religious and palatial construction projects were undertaken in Samarqand and other population centres. Timur also initiated exchange of medical thoughts and patronized physicians, scientists and artists from the neighboring countries like India; his grandson Ulugh Beg
Ulugh Beg
Ulugh Bek was a Timurid ruler as well as an astronomer, mathematician and sultan. His commonly-known name is not truly a personal name, but rather a moniker, which can be loosely translated as "Great Ruler" or "Patriarch Ruler" and was the Turkic equivalent of Timur's Perso-Arabic title Amīr-e...

 was one of the world's first great astronomers. It was during the Timurid dynasty that Turkish, in the form of the Chaghatai
Chagatai language
The Chagatai language is an extinct Turkic language which was once widely spoken in Central Asia, and remained the shared literary language there until the early twentieth century...

 dialect, became a literary language in its own right in Mawarannahr—although the Timurids also patronized writing in Persian. Until then only Persian had been used in the region. The greatest Chaghataid writer, Ali-Shir Nava'i, was active in the city of Herat, now in northwestern Afghanistan, in the second half of the fifteenth century.

The Timurid state quickly broke into two halves after the death of Timur. The chronic internal fighting of the Timurids attracted the attention of the Uzbek nomadic tribes living to the north of the Aral Sea. In 1501 the Uzbeks began a wholesale invasion of Mawarannahr. The slave trade in the Khanate of Bukhara
Emirate of Bukhara
The Emirate of Bukhara was a Central Asian state that existed from 1785 to 1920. It occupied the land between the Amu Darya and Syr Darya rivers, known formerly as Transoxiana. Its core territory was the land along the lower Zarafshan River, and its urban centres were the ancient cities of...

 became prominent and was firmly established. Estimates from 1821 suggest that between 25,000 and 40,000 Persian slaves were working in Bukhara at the time.

In the nineteenth century, the Russian Empire
Russian Empire
The Russian Empire was a state that existed from 1721 until the Russian Revolution of 1917. It was the successor to the Tsardom of Russia and the predecessor of the Soviet Union...

 began to expand and spread into Central Asia
Central Asia
Central Asia is a core region of the Asian continent from the Caspian Sea in the west, China in the east, Afghanistan in the south, and Russia in the north...

. By 1912, Russians living in Uzbekistan numbered 210,306. The "Great Game" period is generally regarded as running from approximately 1813 to the Anglo-Russian Convention of 1907. Following the Bolshevik Revolution
October Revolution
The October Revolution , also known as the Great October Socialist Revolution , Red October, the October Uprising or the Bolshevik Revolution, was a political revolution and a part of the Russian Revolution of 1917...

 of 1917, a second, less intensive phase followed. At the start of the nineteenth century, there were some 2000 miles (3,218.7 km) separating British India and the outlying regions of Tsarist Russia. Much of the land in between was unmapped.

By the beginning of the twentieth century, Central Asia was firmly in the hands of Russia and, despite some early resistance to Bolsheviks, Uzbekistan and the rest of Central Asia became a part of the Soviet Union
Soviet Union
The Soviet Union , officially the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics , was a constitutionally socialist state that existed in Eurasia between 1922 and 1991....

. On October 27, 1924 the Uzbek Soviet Socialist Republic was created. On August 31, 1991, Uzbekistan declared independence, marking September 1 as a national holiday.

The country is now the world's third-largest exporter of cotton
Cotton
Cotton is a soft, fluffy staple fiber that grows in a boll, or protective capsule, around the seeds of cotton plants of the genus Gossypium. The fiber is almost pure cellulose. The botanical purpose of cotton fiber is to aid in seed dispersal....

, and it is developing its mineral
Mineral
A mineral is a naturally occurring solid chemical substance formed through biogeochemical processes, having characteristic chemical composition, highly ordered atomic structure, and specific physical properties. By comparison, a rock is an aggregate of minerals and/or mineraloids and does not...

 and petroleum
Petroleum
Petroleum or crude oil is a naturally occurring, flammable liquid consisting of a complex mixture of hydrocarbons of various molecular weights and other liquid organic compounds, that are found in geologic formations beneath the Earth's surface. Petroleum is recovered mostly through oil drilling...

 reserves.

Politics




The first elections of the Oliy Majlis (Parliament) were held under a resolution adopted by the 16th Supreme Soviet in 1994. In that year, the Supreme Soviet was replaced by the Oliy Majlis. Since then Uzbekistan has held presidential and parliamentarian elections on regular basis but no real opposition candidates or parties are able to participate.

The third elections for the bicameral 150-member Oliy Majlis — the Legislative Chamber and the 100-member Senate — for five-year terms, were held on December 27, 2009, after the second elections that were held in December 2004–2005. The Oliy Majlis was unicameral up to 2004. Its strength increased from 69 deputies (members) in 1994 to 120 in 2004–05 and presently to 150.

The executive
Executive (government)
Executive branch of Government is the part of government that has sole authority and responsibility for the daily administration of the state bureaucracy. The division of power into separate branches of government is central to the idea of the separation of powers.In many countries, the term...

 holds a great deal of power, and the legislature has little power to shape laws. Under terms of a December 27, 1995 referendum, Islam Karimov's first term was extended. Another national referendum was held January 27, 2002 to extend the Constitutional Presidential term from 5 years to 7 years.

The referendum passed, and Karimov's term was extended by an act of parliament to December 2007. Most international observers refused to participate in the process and did not recognize the results, dismissing them as not meeting basic standards. The 2002 referendum also included a plan to create a bicameral parliament, consisting of a lower house (the Oliy Majlis) and an upper house (Senate). Members of the lower house are to be "full time" legislators. Elections for the new bicameral parliament took place on December 26, but no truly independent opposition candidates or parties were able to take part.

The OSCE
Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe
The Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe is the world's largest security-oriented intergovernmental organization. Its mandate includes issues such as arms control, human rights, freedom of the press and fair elections...

 limited observation mission concluded that the elections fell significantly short of OSCE commitments and other international standards for democratic elections. Several political parties have been formed with government approval. Similarly, although multiple media outlets (radio, TV, newspaper) have been established, these either remain under government control or rarely broach political topics. Independent political parties were allowed to organise, recruit members and hold conventions and press conferences, but they have been denied registration under restrictive registration procedures.

Human rights


The Constitution of the Republic of Uzbekistan asserts that "democracy in the Republic of Uzbekistan shall be based upon common human principles, according to which the highest value shall be the human being, his life, freedom, honour, dignity and other inalienable rights."

The official position is summarised in a memorandum "The measures taken by the government of the Republic of Uzbekistan in the field of providing and encouraging human rights" and amounts to the following: the government does everything that is in its power to protect and to guarantee the human rights of Uzbekistan's citizens. Uzbekistan continuously improves its laws and institutions in order to create a more humane society. Over 300 laws regulating the rights and basic freedoms of the people have been passed by the parliament. For instance, an office of Ombudsman
Ombudsman
An ombudsman is a person who acts as a trusted intermediary between an organization and some internal or external constituency while representing not only but mostly the broad scope of constituent interests...

 was established in 1996. On August 2, 2005, President Islam Karimov signed a decree that was to abolish capital punishment in Uzbekistan on January 1, 2008.

However, non-governmental
Non-governmental organization
A non-governmental organization is a legally constituted organization created by natural or legal persons that operates independently from any government. The term originated from the United Nations , and is normally used to refer to organizations that do not form part of the government and are...

 human rights watchdogs, such as IHF
International Helsinki Federation for Human Rights
The International Helsinki Federation for Human Rights was a self-governing group of non-governmental, not-for-profit organizations that act to protect human rights throughout Europe, North America and Central Asia...

, Human Rights Watch
Human Rights Watch
Human Rights Watch is an international non-governmental organization that conducts research and advocacy on human rights. Its headquarters are in New York City and it has offices in Berlin, Beirut, Brussels, Chicago, Geneva, Johannesburg, London, Los Angeles, Moscow, Paris, San Francisco, Tokyo,...

, Amnesty International
Amnesty International
Amnesty International is an international non-governmental organisation whose stated mission is "to conduct research and generate action to prevent and end grave abuses of human rights, and to demand justice for those whose rights have been violated."Following a publication of Peter Benenson's...

, as well as United States Department of State
United States Department of State
The United States Department of State , is the United States federal executive department responsible for international relations of the United States, equivalent to the foreign ministries of other countries...

 and Council of the European Union
Council of the European Union
The Council of the European Union is the institution in the legislature of the European Union representing the executives of member states, the other legislative body being the European Parliament. The Council is composed of twenty-seven national ministers...

 define Uzbekistan as "an authoritarian state with limited civil rights" and express profound concern about "wide-scale violation of virtually all basic human rights".
According to the reports, the most widespread violations are torture
Torture
Torture is the act of inflicting severe pain as a means of punishment, revenge, forcing information or a confession, or simply as an act of cruelty. Throughout history, torture has often been used as a method of political re-education, interrogation, punishment, and coercion...

, arbitrary arrests
Arbitrary arrest and detention
Arbitrary arrest and arbitrary detention are the arrest or detention of an individual in a case in which there is no likelihood or evidence that they committed a crime against legal statute, or in which there has been no proper due process of law...

,
and various restrictions of freedoms: of religion, of speech and press, of free association and assembly.
The reports maintain that the violations are most often committed against members of religious organizations, independent journalists, human rights activists and political activists, including members of the banned opposition parties.
In 2005, Uzbekistan was included into Freedom House
Freedom House
Freedom House is an international non-governmental organization based in Washington, D.C. that conducts research and advocacy on democracy, political freedom and human rights...

's "The Worst of the Worst: The World's Most Repressive Societies."

In October 2002 Craig Murray, the British Ambassador to the country, made a speech at a human rights
Human rights
Human rights are "commonly understood as inalienable fundamental rights to which a person is inherently entitled simply because she or he is a human being." Human rights are thus conceived as universal and egalitarian . These rights may exist as natural rights or as legal rights, in both national...

 conference hosted by Freedom House
Freedom House
Freedom House is an international non-governmental organization based in Washington, D.C. that conducts research and advocacy on democracy, political freedom and human rights...

 in Tashkent
Tashkent
Tashkent is the capital of Uzbekistan and of the Tashkent Province. The officially registered population of the city in 2008 was about 2.2 million. Unofficial sources estimate the actual population may be as much as 4.45 million.-Early Islamic History:...

 in which he asserted that "Uzbekistan is not a functioning democracy" and that the boiling to death of two members of Hizb ut-Tahrir
Hizb ut-Tahrir
Hizb ut-Tahrir is an international Sunni. pan-Islamic political organisation but keeps it open for all including shias,some of its beliefs are against sunni school of thought, whose goal is for all Muslim countries to unify as an Islamic state or caliphate ruled by Islamic law and with a caliph...

 "is not an isolated incident". Later, Secretary-General of the United Nations Kofi Annan
Kofi Annan
Kofi Atta Annan is a Ghanaian diplomat who served as the seventh Secretary-General of the UN from 1 January 1997 to 31 December 2006...

 confronted Uzbek President Islam Karimov with Murray's claims.

Murray was summoned to the FCO in London
London
London is the capital city of :England and the :United Kingdom, the largest metropolitan area in the United Kingdom, and the largest urban zone in the European Union by most measures. Located on the River Thames, London has been a major settlement for two millennia, its history going back to its...

 and on 8 March 2003 was reprimanded for writing in a letter to his employers, in response to a speech by President of the United States
President of the United States
The President of the United States of America is the head of state and head of government of the United States. The president leads the executive branch of the federal government and is the commander-in-chief of the United States Armed Forces....

 George W. Bush
George W. Bush
George Walker Bush is an American politician who served as the 43rd President of the United States, from 2001 to 2009. Before that, he was the 46th Governor of Texas, having served from 1995 to 2000....

, "when it comes to the Karimov regime, systematic torture and rape appear to be treated as peccadilloes, not to affect the relationship and to be downplayed in the international fora ... I hope that once the present crisis is over we will make plain to the US
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

 at senior level our serious concern over their policy in Uzbekistan".

The 2005 civil unrest in Uzbekistan, which resulted in several hundred people being killed, is viewed by many as a landmark event in the history of human rights abuse in Uzbekistan.
A concern has been expressed and a request for an independent investigation of the events has been made by the United States, European Union, the UN, the OSCE Chairman-in-Office and the OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights.
The government of Uzbekistan is accused of unlawful termination of human life and of denying its citizens freedom of assembly
Freedom of assembly
Freedom of assembly, sometimes used interchangeably with the freedom of association, is the individual right to come together and collectively express, promote, pursue and defend common interests...

 and freedom of expression. The government vehemently rebuffs the accusations, maintaining that it merely conducted an anti-terrorist operation, exercising only necessary force. In addition, some officials claim that "an information war on Uzbekistan has been declared" and the human rights violations in Andijan are invented by the enemies of Uzbekistan as a convenient pretext for intervention into the country's internal affairs.

Uzbekistan also does not allow Tajiks to teach their youth in their native language. There have been cases of destroying Tajiki (Persian
Persian language
Persian is an Iranian language within the Indo-Iranian branch of the Indo-European languages. It is primarily spoken in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and countries which historically came under Persian influence...

-language) literary works.

Provinces and districts



Uzbekistan is divided into twelve province
Province
A province is a territorial unit, almost always an administrative division, within a country or state.-Etymology:The English word "province" is attested since about 1330 and derives from the 13th-century Old French "province," which itself comes from the Latin word "provincia," which referred to...

s (viloyatlar, singular viloyat, compound noun viloyati e.g., Toshkent viloyati, Samarqand viloyati, etc.), one autonomous republic
Autonomous republic
An autonomous republic is a type of administrative division similar to a province. A significant number of autonomous republics can be found within the successor states of the Soviet Union, but the majority are located within Russia. Many of these republics were established during the Soviet...

 (respublika, compound noun respublikasi e.g. Qaraqalpaqstan Avtonom Respublikasi, Karakalpakistan Autonomous Republic, etc.), and one independent city
Independent city
An independent city is a city that does not form part of another general-purpose local government entity. These type of cities should not be confused with city-states , which are fully sovereign cities that are not part of any other sovereign state.-Historical precursors:In the Holy Roman Empire,...

 (shahar. compound noun shahri, e.g., Toshkent shahri). Names are given below in the Uzbek language
Uzbek language
Uzbek is a Turkic language and the official language of Uzbekistan. It has about 25.5 million native speakers, and it is spoken by the Uzbeks in Uzbekistan and elsewhere in Central Asia...

, although numerous variations of the transliterations of each name exist.

Division Capital City Area
(km²)
Population (2008) Key
Buxoro Viloyati
Buxoro Province
Buxoro Province is a viloyat of Uzbekistan located in the southwest of the country. The Kyzyl-Kum Desert takes up a large portion of its territory. It borders Turkmenistan, Navoiy Province, Qashqadaryo Province, a tiny bit of Xorazm Province, and the Karakalpakstan Republic. It covers an area...

Buxoro (Bukhara) 39,400 1,576,800 3
Jizzax Viloyati Jizzax  20,500 1,090,900 5
Navoiy Viloyati
Navoiy Province
Navoiy Province is a viloyat of Uzbekistan located in the northwest of the country. The Kyzyl-Kum Desert takes up a large portion of its territory, which is the largest of the provinces of Uzbekistan except for the autonomous Karakalpakstan Republic. Navoiy Province borders with Kazakhstan,...

Navoiy
Navoiy
Navoiy also spelled as Navoi is a city and the capital of Navoiy Province in the southwestern part of Uzbekistan. It is located at latitude 40° 5' 4N; longitude 65° 22' 45E, at an altitude of 382 meters.-History:...

 
110,800 834,100 7
Qashqadaryo Viloyati
Qashqadaryo Province
Qashqadaryo Province , is a viloyat of Uzbekistan, located in the southern part of the country in the basin of the Qashqadaryo River and the western slopes of the Pamir Mountains. It borders with Tadjikistan, Turkmenistan, Samarqand Province, Buxoro Province and Surxondaryo Province. It covers...

Qarshi
Qarshi
Qarshi is a city in southern Uzbekistan. It is the capital of Qashqadaryo Province and has a population of 197,600 . It is about 520 km south-southwest of Tashkent, and about 335 km north of Uzbekistan's border with Afghanistan. It is located at latitude 38° 51' 48N; longitude 65° 47'...

 
28,400 2,537,600 8
Samarqand Viloyati
Samarqand Province
Samarqand Province is a viloyat of Uzbekistan located in the center of the country in the basin of Zarafshan River. It borders with Tajikstan, Navoiy Province, Jizzakh Province and Qashqadaryo Province. It covers an area of 16,400 km²...

Samarqand  16,400  3,032,000 9
Sirdaryo Viloyati
Sirdaryo Province
Sirdarya Province is a viloyat of Uzbekistan, located in the center of the country on the left bank of Syr Darya River. It borders with , Tajikstan, Toshkent Province and Jizzakh Province. It covers an area of 5,100 km², and is mostly desert, with the Starving Steppe taking up a significant...

Guliston
Guliston
Guliston also spelled as Gulistan , formerly known as Mirzachul , is the capital of Sirdarya Province in eastern Uzbekistan. It lies in the southeastern part of the Mirzachül steppe, 75 miles southwest of Tashkent. It has an approx. population of 77,300...

 
5,100 698,100 10
Surxondaryo Viloyati
Surxondaryo Province
Surxondaryo Province , old spelling Surkhandarya Province is a viloyat of Uzbekistan, located in the extreme south-east of the country. Established on March 6, 1941, it borders on Turkmenistan, Tajikstan, Afghanistan and Qashqadaryo Province. It covers an area of 20,100 km²...

Termiz  20,800 2,012,600 11
Toshkent Viloyati Toshkent (Tashkent) 15,300  2,537,500 12
Toshkent Shahri
Tashkent
Tashkent is the capital of Uzbekistan and of the Tashkent Province. The officially registered population of the city in 2008 was about 2.2 million. Unofficial sources estimate the actual population may be as much as 4.45 million.-Early Islamic History:...

Toshkent (Tashkent) ??? 2,192,700 1
Fergana Valley
Fergana Valley
The Fergana Valley or Farghana Valley is a region in Central Asia spreading across eastern Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan. Divided across three subdivisions of the former Soviet Union, the valley is ethnically diverse, and in the early 21st century was the scene of ethnic conflict...

 Region
Farg'ona Viloyati
Fergana Province
Fergana Province is a viloyat of Uzbekistan, located in the southern part of the Fergana Valley in the far east of the country. It borders the Namangan and Andijan Provinces of Uzbekistan, as well as Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan. It covers an area of 6,800 km2...

Farg'ona (Fergana)  6,800 2,997,400 4
Andijon Viloyati
Andijan Province
Andijan Province is a viloyat of Uzbekistan, located in the eastern part of the Fergana Valley in far eastern Uzbekistan. It borders with Kyrgyzstan, Fergana Province and Namangan Province. It covers an area of 4,200 km2...

Andijon  4,200 2,477,900 2
Namangan Viloyati
Namangan Province
Namangan Province is a viloyat of Uzbekistan, located in the southern part of the Fergana Valley in far eastern part of the country. It is on the right bank of Syr Darya River and borders with Kyrgyzstan, Fergana Province and Andijan Province. It covers an area of 7,900 km2...

Namangan
Namangan
Namangan is the third-largest city in Uzbekistan . It is the capital of Namangan Province, in the northern edge of Fergana Valley of north-eastern Uzbekistan.-Geography:...

 
7,900 2,196,200 6
Karakalpakstan Region
Xorazm Viloyati
Xorazm Province
Xorazm Province or Khorezm Province as it is still more commonly known, is a viloyat of Uzbekistan located in the northwest of the country in the lower reaches of the Amu-Darya River. It borders with Turkmenistan, Karakalpakstan, and Buxoro Province. It covers an area of 6,300 km²...

Urganch  6,300  1,517,600 13
Qaraqalpaqstan Respublikasi Nukus
Nukus
Nukus is the sixth-largest city in Uzbekistan, and the capital of the autonomous Karakalpakstan Republic. It has a population of 260,000...

 
160,000 1,612,300 14


The statistics for Toshkent Viloyati also include the statistics for Toshkent Shahri.

The provinces are further divided into districts
Districts of Uzbekistan
The provinces of Uzbekistan are divided into districts . The districts are listed by province, in the general direction from west to east. Names often transliterated from Russian....

 (tuman).

Economy






Along with many Commonwealth of Independent States
Commonwealth of Independent States
The Commonwealth of Independent States is a regional organization whose participating countries are former Soviet Republics, formed during the breakup of the Soviet Union....

 economies, Uzbekistan's economy declined during the first years of transition and then recovered after 1995, as the cumulative effect of policy reforms began to be felt. It has shown robust growth, rising by 4% per year between 1998 and 2003 and accelerating thereafter to 7%–8% per year. According to IMF estimates, the GDP in 2008 will be almost double its value in 1995 (in constant prices). Since 2003 annual inflation rates averaged less than 10%.

Uzbekistan has a very low GNI
Gross National Income
The GNI consists of: the personal consumption expenditures, the gross private investment, the government consumption expenditures, the net income from assets abroad , and the gross exports of goods and services, after deducting two components: the gross imports of goods and services, and the...

 per capita (US$610 in current dollars in 2006, giving a PPP
Purchasing power parity
In economics, purchasing power parity is a condition between countries where an amount of money has the same purchasing power in different countries. The prices of the goods between the countries would only reflect the exchange rates...

 equivalent of US$2,250). By GNI per capita in PPP equivalents Uzbekistan ranks 169 among 209 countries; among the 12 CIS
CIS
CIS usually refers to the Commonwealth of Independent States, a modern political entity consisting of eleven former Soviet Union republics.The acronym CIS may also refer to:-Organizations:...

 countries, only Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan had lower GNI per capita in 2006. Economic production is concentrated in commodities: Uzbekistan is now the world's sixth-largest producer and second-largest exporter of cotton, as well as the seventh largest world producer of gold. It is also a regionally significant producer of natural gas, coal, copper, oil, silver and uranium.

Agriculture
Agriculture in Uzbekistan
Agriculture in Uzbekistan employs 28% of the country's labor force and contributes 24% of its GDP . Crop agriculture requires irrigation and occurs mainly in river valleys and oases. Cultivable land is 4.4 million hectares, or about 10% of Uzbekistan's total area, and it has to be shared between...

 employs 28% of Uzbekistan's labour force and contributes 24% of its GDP (2006 data). While official unemployment is very low, underemployment – especially in rural areas – is estimated to be at least 20%. Still, at cotton-harvest time, all students and teachers are mobilized and enslaved as unpaid labour to help in the fields. The use of child labour in Uzbekistan has led several companies, including Tesco, C&A, Marks & Spencer, Gap, and H&M, to boycott Uzbek cotton.

Facing a multitude of economic challenges upon acquiring independence, the government adopted an evolutionary reform strategy, with an emphasis on state control, reduction of imports and self-sufficiency in energy. Since 1994, the state-controlled media have repeatedly proclaimed the success of this "Uzbekistan Economic Model" and suggested that it is a unique example of a smooth transition to the market economy while avoiding shock, pauperism and stagnation.

The gradualist reform strategy has involved postponing significant macroeconomic and structural reforms. The state in the hands of the bureaucracy
New class
The "New Class" model, as a theory of new social groups in post-industrial societies, gained ascendency during the 1970s as social and political scientists noted how "New Class" groups were shaped by post-material orientations in their pursuit of political and social goals...

 has remained a dominant influence in the economy. Corruption permeates the society and grows more rampant over time: Uzbekistan's 2005 Corruption Perception Index was 137 out of 159 countries, whereas in 2007 Uzbekistan was 175th out of 179 countries. A February 2006 report on the country by the International Crisis Group
International Crisis Group
The International Crisis Group is an international, non-profit, non-governmental organization whose mission is to prevent and resolve deadly conflicts around the world through field-based analyses and high-level advocacy.-History:...

 suggests that revenues earned from key exports, especially cotton, gold, corn and increasingly gas, are distributed among a very small circle of the ruling elite, with little or no benefit for the populace at large.

According to the Economist Intelligence Unit
Economist Intelligence Unit
The Economist Intelligence Unit is part of the Economist Group.It is a research and advisory company providing country, industry and management analysis worldwide and incorporates the former Business International Corporation, a U.S. company acquired by the parent organization in 1986...

, "the government is hostile to allowing the development of an independent private sector, over which it would have no control". Thus, the middle class
Middle class
The middle class is any class of people in the middle of a societal hierarchy. In Weberian socio-economic terms, the middle class is the broad group of people in contemporary society who fall socio-economically between the working class and upper class....

 is marginalised economically and, consequently, politically.

The economic policies have repelled foreign investment, which is the lowest per capita in the CIS. For years, the largest barrier to foreign companies entering the Uzbekistan market has been the difficulty of converting currency. In 2003, the government accepted the obligations of Article VIII under the International Monetary Fund
International Monetary Fund
The International Monetary Fund is an organization of 187 countries, working to foster global monetary cooperation, secure financial stability, facilitate international trade, promote high employment and sustainable economic growth, and reduce poverty around the world...

. providing for full currency convertibility. However, strict currency controls and the tightening of borders have lessened the effect of this measure.

Uzbekistan experienced rampant inflation
Inflation
In economics, inflation is a rise in the general level of prices of goods and services in an economy over a period of time.When the general price level rises, each unit of currency buys fewer goods and services. Consequently, inflation also reflects an erosion in the purchasing power of money – a...

 of around 1000% per year immediately after independence (1992–1994). Stabilisation efforts implemented with guidance from the IMF paid off. The inflation rates were brought down to 50% in 1997 and then to 22% in 2002. Since 2003 annual inflation rates averaged less than 10%. Tight economic policies in 2004 resulted in a drastic reduction of inflation to 3.8% (although alternative estimates based on the price of a true market basket
Market basket
The term market basket or commodity bundle refers to a fixed list of items used specifically to track the progress of inflation in an economy or specific market....

, put it at 15%). The inflation rates moved up to 6.9% in 2006 and 7.6% in 2007 but have remained in the single-digit range.

The government of Uzbekistan restricts foreign imports in many ways, including high import duties. Excise taxes are applied in a highly discriminatory manner to protect locally produced goods. Official tariffs are combined with unofficial, discriminatory charges resulting in total charges amounting to as much as 100 to 150% of the actual value of the product, making imported products virtually unaffordable. Import substitution is an officially declared policy and the government proudly reports a reduction by a factor of two in the volume of consumer goods imported. A number of CIS countries are officially exempt from Uzbekistan import duties.

The Republican Stock Exchange (RSE) 'Tashkent' opened in 1994. It houses a securities exchange, real estate traders, the national investment fund and the national securities depositary. It does not trade all joint-stock companies each month, and therefore market capitalisation varies widely.

Uzbekistan's external position has been strong since 2003. Thanks in part to the recovery of world market prices of gold and cotton (the country's key export commodities), expanded natural gas and some manufacturing exports, and increasing labour migrant transfers, the current account turned into a large surplus (between 9% and 11% of GDP from 2003 to 2005) and foreign exchange reserves, including gold, more than doubled to around US$3 billion.

Demographics



Uzbekistan is Central Asia's most populous country. Its 28.1 million people (July 2011 estimate) comprise nearly half the region's total population.

The population of Uzbekistan is very young: 34.1% of its people are younger than 14 (2008 estimate). According to official sources, Uzbeks
Uzbeks
The Uzbeks are a Turkic ethnic group in Central Asia. They comprise the majority population of Uzbekistan, and large populations can also be found in Afghanistan, Tajikstan, Kyrgyzstan, Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan, Russia, Pakistan, Mongolia and the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region of China...

 comprise a majority (80%) of the total population. Other ethnic groups include Russians
Russians
The Russian people are an East Slavic ethnic group native to Russia, speaking the Russian language and primarily living in Russia and neighboring countries....

 5.5%, Tajiks 5%(official estimate and disputed), Kazakhs
Kazakhs
The Kazakhs are a Turkic people of the northern parts of Central Asia ....

 3%, Karakalpaks
Karakalpaks
The Karakalpaks are a Turkic speaking people. They mainly live in the lower reaches of the Amu Darya and in the delta of Amu Darya on the southern shore of the Aral Sea in Uzbekistan. The name "Karakalpak" comes from two words: "qara" meaning black, and "qalpaq" meaning hat...

 2.5% and Tatars
Tatars
Tatars are a Turkic speaking ethnic group , numbering roughly 7 million.The majority of Tatars live in the Russian Federation, with a population of around 5.5 million, about 2 million of which in the republic of Tatarstan.Significant minority populations are found in Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan,...

 1.5% (1996 estimates).

There is some controversy about the percentage of the Tajik population. While official state numbers from Uzbekistan put the number at 5%, the number is said to be an understatement and some Western scholars put the number up to 20%–30%. The Uzbeks absorbed, among others, the Sart
Sart
Sart is a name for the settled inhabitants of Central Asia which has had shifting meanings over the centuries. Sarts, known sometimes as Ak-Sart in ancient times, did not have any particular ethnic identification, and were usually town-dwellers.-Origin:There are several theories about the origin...

s, a Turko-Persian population of Central Asian peasants and merchants. According to recent genetic genealogy
Genetic genealogy
Genetic genealogy is the application of genetics to traditional genealogy. Genetic genealogy involves the use of genealogical DNA testing to determine the level of genetic relationship between individuals.-History:...

 testing from a University of Oxford study, the genetic admixture of the Uzbeks clusters somewhere between the Mongols
Mongols
Mongols ) are a Central-East Asian ethnic group that lives mainly in the countries of Mongolia, China, and Russia. In China, ethnic Mongols can be found mainly in the central north region of China such as Inner Mongolia...

 and the Iranian peoples
Iranian peoples
The Iranian peoples are an Indo-European ethnic-linguistic group, consisting of the speakers of Iranian languages, a major branch of the Indo-European language family, as such forming a branch of Indo-European-speaking peoples...

.

Uzbekistan has an ethnic Korean population that was forcibly relocated
Deportation of Koreans in the Soviet Union
Deportation of Koreans in the Soviet Union, originally conceived in 1926, initiated in 1930, and carried through in 1937, was the first mass transfer of an entire nationality based on their ethnicity to be committed by the Soviet Union...

 to the region by Stalin from the Soviet Far East
Russian Far East
Russian Far East is a term that refers to the Russian part of the Far East, i.e., extreme east parts of Russia, between Lake Baikal in Eastern Siberia and the Pacific Ocean...

 in 1937–1938. There are also small groups of Armenians in Uzbekistan
Armenians in Uzbekistan
Armenians in Uzbekistan refers to ethnic Armenians living in Uzbekistan. They number around 70,000.The Armenians live mainly in Tashkent. During the Armenian Genocide many Armenians fled through Azerbaijan to Uzbekistan for safety in the Russian empire...

, mostly in Tashkent and Samarkand. The nation is 88% Muslim (mostly Sunni, with a 5% Shi'a minority), 9% Eastern Orthodox and 3% other faiths. The U.S. State Department's International Religious Freedom Report 2004 reports that 0.2% of the population are Buddhist (these being ethnic Koreans). The Bukharan Jews
Bukharan Jews
Bukharan Jews, also Bukharian Jews or Bukhari Jews, or яҳудиёни Бухоро Yahūdieni Bukhoro , Bukhori Hebrew Script: יהודיאני בוכאראי and יהודיאני בוכארי), also called the Binai Israel, are Jews from Central Asia who speak Bukhori, a dialect of the Tajik-Persian language...

 have lived in Central Asia, mostly in Uzbekistan, for thousands of years. There were 94,900 Jews in Uzbekistan in 1989 (about 0.5% of the population according to the 1989 census), but now, since the dissolution of the Soviet Union
Dissolution of the Soviet Union
The dissolution of the Soviet Union was the disintegration of the federal political structures and central government of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics , resulting in the independence of all fifteen republics of the Soviet Union between March 11, 1990 and December 25, 1991...

, most Central Asian Jews left the region for the United States or Israel
Israel
The State of Israel is a parliamentary republic located in the Middle East, along the eastern shore of the Mediterranean Sea...

. Fewer than 5,000 Jews remained in Uzbekistan in 2007.

During the Soviet period, Russians and Ukrainians
Ukrainians
Ukrainians are an East Slavic ethnic group native to Ukraine, which is the sixth-largest nation in Europe. The Constitution of Ukraine applies the term 'Ukrainians' to all its citizens...

 constituted more than half the population of Tashkent
Tashkent
Tashkent is the capital of Uzbekistan and of the Tashkent Province. The officially registered population of the city in 2008 was about 2.2 million. Unofficial sources estimate the actual population may be as much as 4.45 million.-Early Islamic History:...

. The country counted nearly 1.5 million Russians, 12.5% of the population, in the 1970 census. After the dissolution of the Soviet Union, significant emigration of ethnic Russians has taken place, mostly for economic reasons.

In the 1940s, the Crimean Tatars, along with the Germans, Chechens, Greeks, Turks, Kurds and many other nationalities were deported
Population transfer in the Soviet Union
Population transfer in the Soviet Union may be classified into the following broad categories: deportations of "anti-Soviet" categories of population, often classified as "enemies of workers," deportations of entire nationalities, labor force transfer, and organized migrations in opposite...

 to Central Asia. Approximately 100,000 Crimean Tatars
Crimean Tatars
Crimean Tatars or Crimeans are a Turkic ethnic group that originally resided in Crimea. They speak the Crimean Tatar language...

 continue to live in Uzbekistan. The number of Greeks
Greeks in Uzbekistan
There are approximately 9,000 ethnic Greeks in Uzbekistan. The community is made up of Greeks from Russia who were deported by force from that country to Uzbekistan in the 1940s, and political refugees from Greece. About 30,000 Greeks lived in the country before World War II and a further 11,000...

 in Tashkent has decreased from 35,000 in 1974 to about 12,000 today. The majority of Meskhetian Turks left Uzbekistan after 1989.

At least 10% of Uzbekistan's labour force works abroad (mostly in Russia and Kazakhstan
Kazakhstan
Kazakhstan , officially the Republic of Kazakhstan, is a transcontinental country in Central Asia and Eastern Europe. Ranked as the ninth largest country in the world, it is also the world's largest landlocked country; its territory of is greater than Western Europe...

).

Uzbekistan has a 99.3% literacy rate among adults older than 15 (2003 estimate), which is attributable to the free and universal education system of the Soviet Union.

Religion



Islam is by far the dominant religion
Religion
Religion is a collection of cultural systems, belief systems, and worldviews that establishes symbols that relate humanity to spirituality and, sometimes, to moral values. Many religions have narratives, symbols, traditions and sacred histories that are intended to give meaning to life or to...

 in Uzbekistan, as Muslims constitute 90% of the population while 5% of the population follow Russian Orthodox Christianity, and 5% of the population follow other religion according to a 2009 US State Department release. However, a 2009 Pew Research Center
Pew Research Center
The Pew Research Center is an American think tank organization based in Washington, D.C. that provides information on issues, attitudes and trends shaping the United States and the world. The Center and its projects receive funding from The Pew Charitable Trusts. In 1990, Donald S...

 report stated that Uzbekistan's population is 96.3% Muslim. An estimated 93,000 Jews
Jews
The Jews , also known as the Jewish people, are a nation and ethnoreligious group originating in the Israelites or Hebrews of the Ancient Near East. The Jewish ethnicity, nationality, and religion are strongly interrelated, as Judaism is the traditional faith of the Jewish nation...

 were once present in the country.

Despite its predominance, the practice of Islam
Islam
Islam . The most common are and .   : Arabic pronunciation varies regionally. The first vowel ranges from ~~. The second vowel ranges from ~~~...

 is far from monolithic. Many versions of the faith have been practiced in Uzbekistan. The conflict of Islamic tradition with various agendas of reform
Reform movement
A reform movement is a kind of social movement that aims to make gradual change, or change in certain aspects of society, rather than rapid or fundamental changes...

 or secularization
Secularization
Secularization is the transformation of a society from close identification with religious values and institutions toward non-religious values and secular institutions...

 throughout the 20th century has left the outside world with a confused notion of Islamic practices in Central Asia
Central Asia
Central Asia is a core region of the Asian continent from the Caspian Sea in the west, China in the east, Afghanistan in the south, and Russia in the north...

.

In Uzbekistan the end of Soviet
Soviet Union
The Soviet Union , officially the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics , was a constitutionally socialist state that existed in Eurasia between 1922 and 1991....

 power did not bring an upsurge of fundamentalism
Fundamentalism
Fundamentalism is strict adherence to specific theological doctrines usually understood as a reaction against Modernist theology. The term "fundamentalism" was originally coined by its supporters to describe a specific package of theological beliefs that developed into a movement within the...

, as many had predicted, but rather a gradual reacquaintance with the precepts of the faith. However after 2000, there seems to be a rise of support in favor of the Islamists
Islamism
Islamism also , lit., "Political Islam" is set of ideologies holding that Islam is not only a religion but also a political system. Islamism is a controversial term, and definitions of it sometimes vary...

.

Although constitutionally maintaining rights to freedom of religion, Uzbekistan maintains a ban on all religious activities not approved by that state, with particularly harsh treatment of Protestant Christian
Christian
A Christian is a person who adheres to Christianity, an Abrahamic, monotheistic religion based on the life and teachings of Jesus of Nazareth as recorded in the Canonical gospels and the letters of the New Testament...

s being commonplace. See: Human Rights; Freedom of Religion, Uzbekistan

Languages



The Uzbek language
Uzbek language
Uzbek is a Turkic language and the official language of Uzbekistan. It has about 25.5 million native speakers, and it is spoken by the Uzbeks in Uzbekistan and elsewhere in Central Asia...

 is the only official state language, and since 1992 is officially written in latin alphabet
Latin alphabet
The Latin alphabet, also called the Roman alphabet, is the most recognized alphabet used in the world today. It evolved from a western variety of the Greek alphabet called the Cumaean alphabet, which was adopted and modified by the Etruscans who ruled early Rome...

. The Tajik language
Tajik language
Tajik, Tajik Persian, or Tajiki, is a variety of modern Persian spoken in Central Asia. Historically Tajiks called their language zabani farsī , meaning Persian language in English; the term zabani tajikī, or Tajik language, was introduced in the 20th century by the Soviets...

 is widespread in the cities of Bukhara
Bukhara
Bukhara , from the Soghdian βuxārak , is the capital of the Bukhara Province of Uzbekistan. The nation's fifth-largest city, it has a population of 263,400 . The region around Bukhara has been inhabited for at least five millennia, and the city has existed for half that time...

 and Samarkand
Samarkand
Although a Persian-speaking region, it was not united politically with Iran most of the times between the disintegration of the Seleucid Empire and the Arab conquest . In the 6th century it was within the domain of the Turkic kingdom of the Göktürks.At the start of the 8th century Samarkand came...

 because of their relatively large population of ethnic Tajiks.

Russian is an important language for interethnic communication, especially in the cities, including much day-to-day technical, scientific, governmental and business use. Russian is the main language of over 14% of the population and is spoken as a second language by many more. The use of Russian in remote rural areas has always been limited, and today school children have no proficiency in Russian even in urban centres. However, it was reported in 2003 that over half of the population could speak Russian, and a renewed close political relationship between Russia and Uzbekistan have meant that official discouragement of Russian has dropped off sharply.

In 1992 Uzbekistan officially shifted back to Latin script, but many signs and notices (including official government boards in the streets) are still written in Uzbek Cyrillic script that had been used in Uzbek Soviet Socialist Republic since 1940. Computers as a rule operate using the "Uzbek Cyrillic" keyboard, and Latin script is reportedly composed using the standard English keyboard.

Communications



According to the official source report, as of March 10, 2008, the number of cellular phone users in Uzbekistan reached 7 million, up from 3.7 million on July 1, 2007. The largest mobile operator in terms of number of subscribers is MTS-Uzbekistan (former Uzdunrobita
Uzdunrobita
Uzdunrobita is the largest mobile phone operator in Uzbekistan.Uzdunrobita was founded on August 19, 1991, as a joint venture between a group of American investors, the International Communications Group, with a 45% stake; and the government of what was then the Uzbek Soviet Socialist Republic,...

 and part of Russian Mobile TeleSystems) and it is followed by Beeline (part of Russia's Beeline) and UCell (ex Coscom) (originally part of the U.S. MCT Corp., now a subsidiary of the Nordic/Baltic telecommunication company TeliaSonera
TeliaSonera
TeliaSonera AB is the dominant telephone company and mobile network operator in Sweden and Finland. The company has operations in other countries in Northern, Eastern Europe, Central Asia and Spain, with a total of 150 million mobile customers...

 AB).

As of July 1, 2007, the estimated number of internet users was 1.8 million, according to UzACI.

Transportation




Tashkent
Tashkent
Tashkent is the capital of Uzbekistan and of the Tashkent Province. The officially registered population of the city in 2008 was about 2.2 million. Unofficial sources estimate the actual population may be as much as 4.45 million.-Early Islamic History:...

, the nation's capital and largest city, has a three-line rapid transit system
Rapid transit
A rapid transit, underground, subway, elevated railway, metro or metropolitan railway system is an electric passenger railway in an urban area with a high capacity and frequency, and grade separation from other traffic. Rapid transit systems are typically located either in underground tunnels or on...

 built in 1977, and expanded in 2001 after ten years' independence from the Soviet Union
Soviet Union
The Soviet Union , officially the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics , was a constitutionally socialist state that existed in Eurasia between 1922 and 1991....

. Uzbekistan is currently the only country in Central Asia with a subway system, which is promoted as one of the cleanest systems in the former Soviet Union. The stations are exceedingly ornate. For example, the station Metro Kosmonavtov built in 1984 is decorated using a space travel
Human spaceflight
Human spaceflight is spaceflight with humans on the spacecraft. When a spacecraft is manned, it can be piloted directly, as opposed to machine or robotic space probes and remotely-controlled satellites....

 theme to recognise the achievements of mankind in space exploration and to commemorate the role of Vladimir Dzhanibekov
Vladimir Dzhanibekov
Vladimir Aleksandrovich Dzhanibekov is a former cosmonaut who made five flights.He was born in the remote area of Iskandar in Tashkent Province, Uzbekistan. He changed his surname from Krysin when he married to honor his wife's family, which was noble kin of the descendants of the medieval Kazakh...

, the Soviet cosmonaut of Uzbek origin. A statue of Vladimir Dzhanibekov stands near one of the station's entrances.

There are government-operated trams, buses and trolley buses running across the city. There are also many taxis, both registered and unregistered. Uzbekistan has car-producing plants which produce modern cars. The car production is supported by the government and the Korean auto company Daewoo
Daewoo
Daewoo or the Daewoo Group was a major South Korean chaebol . It was founded on 22 March 1967 as Daewoo Industrial and was dismantled by the Korean government in 1999...

. The Uzbek government acquired a 50% stake in Daewoo in 2005 for an undisclosed sum, and in May 2007 UzDaewooAuto
UzDaewooAuto
Uz-DaewooAvto is a 1992 founded joint venture between the Uzbek state owned UzAvtosanoat and the South Korean GM Daewoo. The company produces vehicles under the brand name Uz-Daewoo and is increasingly important in the markets of the CIS area. The company's assembly plant is located in Asaka. The...

, the car maker, signed a strategic agreement with General Motors-Daewoo Auto and Technology (GMDAT
GM Daewoo
GM Korea Company is South Korea's second largest automobile manufacturer and is a division of the General Motors Company. GM Korea's roots go back to the former Daewoo which was split from its parent company, Daewoo Group, in 2001...

, see: GM Uzbekistan also). The government also bought a stake in Turkey's Koc in SamKochAvto
SamKochAvto
SamKochAvto is a joint Turkish–Uzbekistani venture with major investment by the Turkish company Koc Holding. Located in Samarkand, Uzbekistan, the plant manufactures buses and has recently launched a production line for Ford cargo trucks. SamKochAvto produces 4 models of buses and 5 truck models,...

, a producer of small buses and lorries. Afterwards, it signed an agreement with Isuzu Motors
Isuzu
, is a Japanese car, commercial vehicle and heavy truck manufacturing company, headquartered in Tokyo. In 2005, Isuzu became the world's largest manufacturer of medium to heavy duty trucks. It has assembly and manufacturing plants in the Japanese city of Fujisawa, as well as in the prefectures...

 of Japan to produce Isuzu buses and lorries.

Train links connect many towns within Uzbekistan, as well as neighboring former republics of the Soviet Union. Moreover, after independence two fast-running train systems were established. Uzbekistan has launched first high-speed railway in Central Asia
Tashkent–Samarkand high-speed rail line
The Tashkent to Samarkand high-speed rail line is a , high-speed rail, connection between the two largest Uzbek cities of Tashkent and Samarkand and through four provinces: Tashkent, Sirdaryo, Jizzakh and Samarqand in Uzbekistan...

 in September 2011 between Tashkent
Tashkent
Tashkent is the capital of Uzbekistan and of the Tashkent Province. The officially registered population of the city in 2008 was about 2.2 million. Unofficial sources estimate the actual population may be as much as 4.45 million.-Early Islamic History:...

 and Samarqand. The new high-speed electric train, call Afrosiyob, was manufactured by Patentes Talgo S.L.
Talgo
Talgo is a Spanish manufacturer of railway vehicles. It is best known for a design of articulated railway passenger cars in which the wheels are mounted in pairs, but not joined by an axle, and being between rather than underneath the individual coaches...

 (Spain) and carried out its first trip from Tashkent to Samarkand on August 26 2011.

There is also a large airplane plant that was built during the Soviet era – Tashkent Chkalov Aviation Manufacturing Plant or ТАПОиЧ in Russian. The plant originated during World War II, when production facilities were evacuated south and east to avoid capture by advancing Nazi forces. Until the late 1980s, the plant was one of the leading airplane production centers in the USSR, but with dissolution of the Soviet Union its manufacturing equipment became outdated, and most of the workers were laid off. Now it produces only a few planes a year, but with interest from Russian companies growing in it, there are rumours of production-enhancement plans.

Military



Uzbekistan possesses the largest military force in the Central Asian region having around 65,000 people in uniform. Its structure was inherited from the Soviet Armed Forces
Soviet Armed Forces
The Soviet Armed Forces, also called the Armed Forces of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics and Armed Forces of the Soviet Union refers to the armed forces of the Russian SFSR , and Soviet Union from their beginnings in the...

' Turkestan Military District
Turkestan Military District
The Turkestan Military District was a military district of both the Imperial Russian Army and the Soviet Armed Forces, with its headquarters at Tashkent. The District was first created during the 1874 Russian military reform when by order of Minister D.A. Milyutinym the territory of Russia was...

, although it is moving toward a fully restructured organisation, which is to be based on motor rifle troops (motorised infantry) with some light and Special Forces. The Uzbek Armed Forces' equipment is not modern, and training, while improving, is neither uniform nor adequate for its new mission of territorial security.

The government has accepted the arms control obligations of the former Soviet Union, acceded to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (as a non-nuclear state), and supported an active program by the U.S. Defense Threat Reduction Agency
Defense Threat Reduction Agency
The Defense Threat Reduction Agency is an agency within the United States Department of Defense and is the official Combat Support Agency for countering weapons of mass destruction . DTRA's main functions are threat reduction, threat control, combat support, and technology development...

 (DTRA) in western Uzbekistan (Nukus
Nukus
Nukus is the sixth-largest city in Uzbekistan, and the capital of the autonomous Karakalpakstan Republic. It has a population of 260,000...

 and Vozrozhdeniye Island). The Government of Uzbekistan spends about 3.7% of GDP on the military but has received a growing infusion of Foreign Military Financing (FMF) and other security assistance funds since 1998.

Following the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks in the U.S., Uzbekistan approved the U.S. Central Command's request for access to an air base, the Karshi-Khanabad
Karshi-Khanabad
Karshi-Khanabad is an air base in southeastern Uzbekistan, just east of Karshi. It is home to the 60th Separate Mixed Aviation Brigade of the Uzbek Air Force. A section of the base serves as a commercial airport, supporting a limited number of passenger flights.From 1954 to 1981, the 735th Fighter...

 airfield, in southern Uzbekistan. However, Uzbekistan demanded that the U.S. withdraw from the airbases after the Andijan massacre
Andijan massacre
The Andijan massacre occurred when Uzbek Interior Ministry and National Security Service troops fired into a crowd of protesters in Andijan, Uzbekistan on 13 May 2005. Estimates of those killed on 13 May range from between 187, the official count of the government, and 5,000 people, with most...

 and the U.S. reaction to this massacre. The last US troops left Uzbekistan in November 2005.

Foreign relations




Uzbekistan joined the Commonwealth of Independent States
Commonwealth of Independent States
The Commonwealth of Independent States is a regional organization whose participating countries are former Soviet Republics, formed during the breakup of the Soviet Union....

 in December 1991. However, it is opposed to reintegration and withdrew from the CIS collective security arrangement in 1999. Since that time, Uzbekistan has participated in the CIS peacekeeping force in Tajikistan and in UN-organized groups to help resolve the Tajikistan and Afghanistan conflicts, both of which it sees as posing threats to its own stability.

Previously close to Washington (which gave Uzbekistan half a billion dollars in aid in 2004, about a quarter of its military budget), the government of Uzbekistan has recently restricted American military use of the airbase at Karshi-Khanabad
Karshi-Khanabad
Karshi-Khanabad is an air base in southeastern Uzbekistan, just east of Karshi. It is home to the 60th Separate Mixed Aviation Brigade of the Uzbek Air Force. A section of the base serves as a commercial airport, supporting a limited number of passenger flights.From 1954 to 1981, the 735th Fighter...

 for air operations in neighboring Afghanistan. Uzbekistan was an active supporter of U.S. efforts against worldwide terrorism and joined the coalitions that have dealt with both Afghanistan and Iraq.

The relationship between Uzbekistan and the United States began to deteriorate after the so-called "colour revolutions" in Georgia
Georgia (country)
Georgia is a sovereign state in the Caucasus region of Eurasia. Located at the crossroads of Western Asia and Eastern Europe, it is bounded to the west by the Black Sea, to the north by Russia, to the southwest by Turkey, to the south by Armenia, and to the southeast by Azerbaijan. The capital of...

 and Ukraine
Ukraine
Ukraine is a country in Eastern Europe. It has an area of 603,628 km², making it the second largest contiguous country on the European continent, after Russia...

 (and to a lesser extent Kyrgyzstan
Kyrgyzstan
Kyrgyzstan , officially the Kyrgyz Republic is one of the world's six independent Turkic states . Located in Central Asia, landlocked and mountainous, Kyrgyzstan is bordered by Kazakhstan to the north, Uzbekistan to the west, Tajikistan to the southwest and China to the east...

). When the U.S. joined in a call for an independent international investigation of the bloody events at Andijon
Andijan massacre
The Andijan massacre occurred when Uzbek Interior Ministry and National Security Service troops fired into a crowd of protesters in Andijan, Uzbekistan on 13 May 2005. Estimates of those killed on 13 May range from between 187, the official count of the government, and 5,000 people, with most...

, the relationship took an additional nosedive, and President Islam Karimov changed the political alignment of the country to bring it closer to Russia and China, countries which chose not to criticise Uzbekistan's leaders for their alleged human rights violations.

In late July 2005, the government of Uzbekistan ordered the United States to vacate an air base in Karshi-Kanabad (near Uzbekistan's border with Afghanistan) within 180 days. Karimov had offered use of the base to the U.S. shortly after 9/11. It is also believed by some Uzbeks that the protests in Andijan were brought about by the U.K. and U.S. influences in the area of Andijan. This is another reason for the hostility between Uzbekistan and the West.

Uzbekistan is a member of the United Nations
United Nations
The United Nations is an international organization whose stated aims are facilitating cooperation in international law, international security, economic development, social progress, human rights, and achievement of world peace...

 (UN) (since March 2, 1992), the Euro-Atlantic Partnership Council
Euro-Atlantic Partnership Council
The Euro-Atlantic Partnership Council , a NATO institution, is a multilateral forum created to improve relations between NATO and non-NATO countries in Europe and those parts of Asia on the European periphery. The member states meet to cooperate and consult on a range of political and security issues...

 (EAPC), Partnership for Peace
Partnership for Peace
Partnership for Peace is a North Atlantic Treaty Organisation program aimed at creating trust between NATO and other states in Europe and the former Soviet Union; 22 States are members...

 (PfP), and the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE). It belongs to the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) and the Economic Cooperation Organisation (ECO) (comprising the five Central Asian countries, Azerbaijan
Azerbaijan
Azerbaijan , officially the Republic of Azerbaijan is the largest country in the Caucasus region of Eurasia. Located at the crossroads of Western Asia and Eastern Europe, it is bounded by the Caspian Sea to the east, Russia to the north, Georgia to the northwest, Armenia to the west, and Iran to...

, Turkey
Turkey
Turkey , known officially as the Republic of Turkey , is a Eurasian country located in Western Asia and in East Thrace in Southeastern Europe...

, Iran
Iran
Iran , officially the Islamic Republic of Iran , is a country in Southern and Western Asia. The name "Iran" has been in use natively since the Sassanian era and came into use internationally in 1935, before which the country was known to the Western world as Persia...

, Afghanistan
Afghanistan
Afghanistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, is a landlocked country located in the centre of Asia, forming South Asia, Central Asia and the Middle East. With a population of about 29 million, it has an area of , making it the 42nd most populous and 41st largest nation in the world...

, and Pakistan
Pakistan
Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

). In 1999, Uzbekistan joined the GUAM
Guam
Guam is an organized, unincorporated territory of the United States located in the western Pacific Ocean. It is one of five U.S. territories with an established civilian government. Guam is listed as one of 16 Non-Self-Governing Territories by the Special Committee on Decolonization of the United...

 alliance (Georgia, Ukraine, Azerbaijan and Moldova
Moldova
Moldova , officially the Republic of Moldova is a landlocked state in Eastern Europe, located between Romania to the West and Ukraine to the North, East and South. It declared itself an independent state with the same boundaries as the preceding Moldavian Soviet Socialist Republic in 1991, as part...

), which was formed in 1997 (making it GUUAM), but pulled out of the organization in 2005.

Uzbekistan is also a member of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) and hosts the SCO’s Regional Anti-Terrorist Structure (RATS) in Tashkent. Uzbekistan joined the new Central Asian Cooperation Organisation (CACO) in 2002. The CACO consists of Uzbekistan, Tajikistan
Tajikistan
Tajikistan , officially the Republic of Tajikistan , is a mountainous landlocked country in Central Asia. Afghanistan borders it to the south, Uzbekistan to the west, Kyrgyzstan to the north, and China to the east....

, Kazakhstan
Kazakhstan
Kazakhstan , officially the Republic of Kazakhstan, is a transcontinental country in Central Asia and Eastern Europe. Ranked as the ninth largest country in the world, it is also the world's largest landlocked country; its territory of is greater than Western Europe...

 and Kyrgyzstan. It is a founding member of, and remains involved in, the Central Asian Union
Central Asian Union
A Central Asian Union was proposed by Kazakhstan President Nursultan Nazarbayev on April 26, 2007, in order to create an economic and political union similar to that of the EU encompassing the five former Soviet Central Asian republics of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and...

, formed with Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan, and joined in March 1998 by Tajikistan.

In September 2006, UNESCO
UNESCO
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization is a specialized agency of the United Nations...

 presented Islam Karimov an award for Uzbekistan's preservation of its rich culture and traditions. Despite criticism, this seems to be a sign of improving relationships between Uzbekistan and the West.

The month of October 2006 also saw a decrease in the isolation of Uzbekistan from the West. The EU announced that it was planning to send a delegation to Uzbekistan to talk about human rights and liberties, after a long period of hostile relations between the two. Although it is equivocal about whether the official or unofficial version of the Andijan Massacre
Andijan massacre
The Andijan massacre occurred when Uzbek Interior Ministry and National Security Service troops fired into a crowd of protesters in Andijan, Uzbekistan on 13 May 2005. Estimates of those killed on 13 May range from between 187, the official count of the government, and 5,000 people, with most...

 is true, the EU is evidently willing to ease its economic sanctions against Uzbekistan. Nevertheless, it is generally assumed among Uzbekistan's population that the government will stand firm in maintaining its close ties with the Russian Federation and in its theory that the 2004–2005 protests in Uzbekistan were promoted by the USA and UK.

Culture



Uzbekistan has a wide mix of ethnic groups and cultures, with the Uzbek
Uzbeks
The Uzbeks are a Turkic ethnic group in Central Asia. They comprise the majority population of Uzbekistan, and large populations can also be found in Afghanistan, Tajikstan, Kyrgyzstan, Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan, Russia, Pakistan, Mongolia and the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region of China...

 being the majority group. In 1995 about 71% of Uzbekistan's population was Uzbek. The chief minority groups were Russians (8%), Tajiks (5–30%), Kazaks
Kazakhs
The Kazakhs are a Turkic people of the northern parts of Central Asia ....

 (4%), Tatars (2.5%) and Karakalpaks (2%). It is said, however, that the number of non-Uzbek people living in Uzbekistan is decreasing as Russians and other minority groups slowly leave and Uzbeks return from other parts of the former Soviet Union
Soviet Union
The Soviet Union , officially the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics , was a constitutionally socialist state that existed in Eurasia between 1922 and 1991....

.

When Uzbekistan gained independence in 1991, there was concern that Muslim fundamentalism would spread across the region. The expectation was that a country long denied freedom of religious practice would undergo a very rapid increase in the expression of its dominant faith. As of 1994, well over half of Uzbekistan's population was said to be Muslim, though in an official survey few of that number had any real knowledge of the religion or knew how to practice it. However, Islamic observance is increasing in the region.

Uzbekistan has a high literacy rate, with about 99.3% of adults above the age of 15 being able to read and write. However with only 88% of the under-15 population currently enrolled in education, this figure may drop in the future. Uzbekistan has encountered severe budgeting shortfalls in its education program. The education law of 1992 began the process of theoretical reform, but the physical base has deteriorated and curriculum revision has been slow.

Uzbekistan's universities create almost 600,000 graduates annually.

Music




Central Asian classical music is called Shashmaqam
Shashmaqam
Shashmaqam is a Central Asian musical genre, , which may have developed in the city of Bukhara. Shashmaqam means the six Maqams in the Persian language, dastgah being the name for Persian modes, and maqams being the name for modes more generally.It is a refined sort of music, with lyrics derived...

, which arose in Bukhara
Bukhara
Bukhara , from the Soghdian βuxārak , is the capital of the Bukhara Province of Uzbekistan. The nation's fifth-largest city, it has a population of 263,400 . The region around Bukhara has been inhabited for at least five millennia, and the city has existed for half that time...

 in the late 16th century when that city was a regional capital. Shashmaqam is closely related to Azerbaijan
Azerbaijan
Azerbaijan , officially the Republic of Azerbaijan is the largest country in the Caucasus region of Eurasia. Located at the crossroads of Western Asia and Eastern Europe, it is bounded by the Caspian Sea to the east, Russia to the north, Georgia to the northwest, Armenia to the west, and Iran to...

i Mugam and Uyghur muqam. The name, which translates as six maqams refers to the structure of the music, which contains six sections in six different Musical mode
Musical mode
In the theory of Western music since the ninth century, mode generally refers to a type of scale. This usage, still the most common in recent years, reflects a tradition dating to the middle ages, itself inspired by the theory of ancient Greek music.The word encompasses several additional...

s, similar to classical Persian traditional music. Interludes of spoken Sufi poetry
Sufi poetry
Sufi poetry has been written in many languages, both for private devotional reading and as lyrics for music played during worship, or dhikr. Themes and styles established in Punjabi Poetry, Sindhi Poetry, Arabic poetry and mostly Persian poetry have had an enormous influence on Sufi poetry...

 interrupt the music, typically beginning at a lower register and gradually ascending to a climax before calming back down to the beginning tone.

Endurance of listening and continual audiences that attend events, such as Bazms or Weddings, is what makes the Folk-pop style of music so popular. The classical music in Uzbekistan is very different than that of the pop music. Mostly men listen to Solo or Duo shows during a morning or evening meeting amongst men. Shash maqam, which is the main component of the classical genre of music. The large support of the musicians from high class families, which meant the Patronage was to be paid to the Shash maqam above all things. Poetry is where some of the music is drawn from. In some instances of the music, the 2 languages are even mixed in the same song. In the 1950s, the folk music became less popular, and the genre was barred from the radio stations. They did not completely dispel the music all together, although the name changed to Feudal music. Although banned, the folk musical groups continued to play their music in their own ways and spread it individually as well. Many say that it was the most liberated musical experience in their lives.

Education


Uzbekistan has a high Literacy rate with about 88% of adults above the age of 15 being able to read and write. However with only 76% of the under 15 population currently enrolled in education this figure may drop in the future. Uzbekistan has encountered severe budgeting shortfalls in its education program. The education law of 1992 began the process of Theoretical reform, but the physical base has deteriorated, and curriculum revision has been slow.

Holidays


  • January 1 – New Year "Yangi Yil Bayrami"
  • January 14 – Vatan Himoyachilari kuni
  • March 8 – International Women's Day – "Xalqaro Xotin-Qizlar kuni"
  • March 21 – Navrooz – "Navro'z Bayrami"
  • May 9 – Remembrance Day – "Xotira va Qadirlash kuni"
  • September 1 – Independence Day – "Mustaqillik kuni"
  • October 1 – Teacher's Day – "O'qituvchi va Murabbiylar"
  • December 8 – "Constitution Day" – Konstitutsiya kuni



Variable date
  • End of Ramazon Ramazon Hayit Eid al-Fitr
  • 70 days later Qurbon Hayit Eid al-Adha

Cuisine




Uzbek Cuisine is influenced by local agriculture
Agriculture
Agriculture is the cultivation of animals, plants, fungi and other life forms for food, fiber, and other products used to sustain life. Agriculture was the key implement in the rise of sedentary human civilization, whereby farming of domesticated species created food surpluses that nurtured the...

, as in most nations. There is a great deal of grain farming in Uzbekistan, so breads and noodles are of importance and Uzbek cuisine has been characterized as noodle rich. Mutton is a popular variety of meat due to the abundance of sheep in the country and it is part of various Uzbek dishes.

Uzbekistan's signature dish is Palov (Plov or Osh), a main course typically made with rice
Rice
Rice is the seed of the monocot plants Oryza sativa or Oryza glaberrima . As a cereal grain, it is the most important staple food for a large part of the world's human population, especially in East Asia, Southeast Asia, South Asia, the Middle East, and the West Indies...

, pieces of meat
Meat
Meat is animal flesh that is used as food. Most often, this means the skeletal muscle and associated fat and other tissues, but it may also describe other edible tissues such as organs and offal...

, and grated carrots and onions. Oshi Nahor or morning Plov, is served in the early morning (between 6 and 9 am) to large gatherings of guests, typically as part of an ongoing wedding celebration. Other notable national dishes include: Shurpa (Shurva or Shorva), a soup made of large pieces of fatty meat (usually mutton), and fresh vegetables; Norin
Naryn (soup)
Naryn or norin is an Uzbek pasta dish made with fresh hand-rolled noodles and horse meat. Naryn can be served as a cold pasta dish or as a hot noodle soup ....

 and Langman, noodle-based dishes that may be served as a soup or a main course; Manti, Chuchvara
Chuchvara
Chuchvara is a very small dumpling typical of Uzbek cuisine. Made of unleavened dough squares filled with meat, it is similar to the Russian pelmeni and the Chinese wonton, but in observance of the Islamic dietary rules, the meat filling is without pork. The dough for chuchvara is made with flour,...

, and Somsa, stuffed pockets of dough
Dough
Dough is a paste made out of any cereals or leguminous crops by mixing flour with a small amount of water and/or other liquid. This process is a precursor to making a wide variety of foodstuffs, particularly breads and bread-based items , flatbreads, noodles, pastry, and similar items)...

 served as an appetizer or a main course; Dimlama
Dimlama
Dimlama is an Uzbek stew made with various combinations of meat, potatoes, onions, vegetables, and sometimes fruits. Meat and vegetables are cut into large pieces and placed in layers in a tightly sealed pot to simmer slowly in their own juices...

 (a meat and vegetable stew) and various Kebabs, usually served as a main course.

Green tea
Green tea
Green tea is made solely from the leaves of Camellia sinensis that have undergone minimal oxidation during processing. Green tea originates from China and has become associated with many cultures throughout Asia. It has recently become more widespread in the West, where black tea is traditionally...

 is the national hot beverage taken throughout the day; teahouses (Chaikhanas) are of cultural importance. The more usual black tea
Black tea
Black tea is a variety of tea that is more oxidized than the oolong, green, and white varieties.All four varieties are made from leaves of the shrub Camellia sinensis. Black tea is generally stronger in flavor and contains more caffeine than the less oxidized teas. Two principal varieties of the...

 is preferred in Tashkent
Tashkent
Tashkent is the capital of Uzbekistan and of the Tashkent Province. The officially registered population of the city in 2008 was about 2.2 million. Unofficial sources estimate the actual population may be as much as 4.45 million.-Early Islamic History:...

, both green and black teas are taken daily without milk or sugar. Tea always accompanies a meal, but it is also a drink of hospitality, automatically offered - green or black - to every guest. Ayran
Ayran
Ayran or laban is a cold beverage of yogurt mixed with cold water and sometimes salt; it is popular in many Central Asian, Middle Eastern and South-eastern European countries....

, a chilled yogurt drink, is popular in summer, but does not replace hot tea.

The use of alcohol is less widespread than in the west, but wine is comparatively popular for a Muslim nation as Uzbekistan is largely secular. Uzbekistan has 14 wineries, the oldest and most famous being the Khovrenko Winery in Samarkand
Samarkand
Although a Persian-speaking region, it was not united politically with Iran most of the times between the disintegration of the Seleucid Empire and the Arab conquest . In the 6th century it was within the domain of the Turkic kingdom of the Göktürks.At the start of the 8th century Samarkand came...

 (est. 1927). The Samarkand Winery produces a range of dessert wines from local grape varieties: Gulyakandoz, Shirin
Shirin
Shirin was a wife of the Sassanid Persian Shahanshah , Khosrau II. In the revolution after the death of Khosrau's father Hormizd IV, the General Bahram Chobin took power over the Persian empire. Shirin fled with Khosrau to Syria where they lived under the protection of Byzantine emperor Maurice...

, Aleatiko, and Kabernet likernoe (literally Cabernet dessert wine in Russian). Uzbek wines have received international awards and are exported to Russia and other countries.

Sport




Uzbekistan is home to former racing cyclist Djamolidine Abdoujaparov. Abdoujaparov has won the points contest in the Tour de France
Tour de France
The Tour de France is an annual bicycle race held in France and nearby countries. First staged in 1903, the race covers more than and lasts three weeks. As the best known and most prestigious of cycling's three "Grand Tours", the Tour de France attracts riders and teams from around the world. The...

 three times, each time winning the coveted green jersey
Green jersey
The green jersey is a term used in road bicycle racing and Grand Tour stage races in particular. The green jersey is a distinctive racing jersey worn by the leader in a subsidiary competition....

. (The green jersey is second only to the yellow jersey
Yellow jersey
The general classification in the Tour de France is the most important classification, the one by which the winner of the Tour de France is determined. Since 1919, the leader of the general classification wears the yellow jersey .-History:...

.) Abdoujaparov was a specialist at winning stages in tours or one-day races when the bunch or peloton
Peloton
The peloton , field, bunch or pack is the large main group of riders in a road bicycle race. Riders in a group save energy by riding close near other riders...

 would finish together. He would often 'sprint' in the final kilometre and had a reputation as being dangerous in these bunch sprints as he would weave from side to side. This reputation earned him the nickname 'The Terror of Tashkent'.

Artur Taymazov
Artur Taymazov
Artur Taymazov is an Uzbek wrestler of Ossetian origin, and Uzbekistan's most decorated Olympian. Making his Olympic debut in Sydney in 2000, he won Uzbekistan's first Olympic wrestling medal in the 130 kg weight class, losing to Russian David Musul'bes in the final...

 won Uzbekistan's first wrestling medal at the 2000 Summer Olympic Games, as well as two gold medals at both the 2004 and 2008 Summer Olympic Games in Men's 120 kg.

Ruslan Chagaev
Ruslan Chagaev
Ruslan Chagaev born October 19, 1978 in Andijan, Uzbek SSR, Soviet Union) is an Uzbekistani former WBA heavyweight boxing champion of Tatar ethnicity...

 is a professional boxer representing Uzbekistan in the WBA. He won the WBA champion title in 2007 after defeating Russian Nikolai Valuev. Chagaev defended his title twice before losing it to Vladimir Klitschko in 2009.

Michael Kolganov
Michael Kolganov
Michael Kolganov is a Soviet-born, Israeli sprint canoer and former world champion. Competing in three Summer Olympics, he won the bronze medal in the K-1 500 m event at Sydney in 2000...

, sprint canoer, was world champion and won an Olympic bronze in K-1 500-meter. Gymnast Alexander Shatilov
Alexander Shatilov
Alexander Shatilov is an Israeli artistic gymnast. He specializes in the floor exercise, in which he won several medals at world and European championships, and reached the final at the 2008 Summer Olympics.-Biography:...

 won a world bronze as an artistic gymnast in floor exercise.

Uzbekistan is the home of the International Kurash Association. Kurash is an internationalized and modernized form of the traditional Uzbek fighting art of Kurash
Kurash
Kurash is a form of upright jacket wrestling native to Uzbeks, practiced since ancient times. It is an event in the Asian Games and there is an effort to include Kurash in the Olympic games.-Rules:...

.

Football is the most popular sport in Uzbekistan. Uzbekistan's premier football league is the Uzbek League
Uzbek League
The Uzbekistan Professional Football League , is the top division of football in Uzbekistan, and is operated under the auspices of the Uzbekistan Football Federation.-Soviet time champions:*1926 : FC Tashkent*1927 : FC Tashkent*1928 : FC Fergana...

 which features 16 teams. The current champions are FC Bunyodkor
FC Bunyodkor
FC Bunyodkor is an Uzbek football club based in Tashkent, Uzbekistan.The club finished second in the 2007 Uzbek League season and made the semi-finals of the 2008 AFC Champions League...

, and the team with the most championships is FC Pakhtakor Tashkent
FC Pakhtakor Tashkent
FC Pakhtakor Tashkent is an Uzbek professional football club, based in the capital Tashkent. Pakhtakor means cotton-grower in English.Playing in the Uzbek League since 1992, the club has been the undisputed powerhouse in Uzbekistan since the fall of the Soviet Union, winning eight Uzbek League...

 with 8. The current player of the year (2010) is Server Djeparov
Server Djeparov
Server Djeparov is an Uzbekistani professional football midfielder who currently plays for Al-Shabab. He has won the Asian Footballer of the Year awards twice, first in 2008 and the other in 2011.-Early life:He was born on 3 October 1982 in Chirchiq, Uzbek SSR...

. Uzbekistan regularly participates in the AFC Champions League
AFC Champions League
The AFC Champions League is the premier Asian club football competition hosted annually by Asian Football Confederation . The tournament is contested among the top thirty-two clubs from the top 10 Asian leagues, two of which must qualify through the playoffs...

 and the AFC Cup
AFC Cup
The AFC Cup is an annual international association football competition between domestic clubs sides run by the Asian Football Confederation . Qualification to the competition is to clubs from AFC-affiliated countries which fall into the AFC's 'developing nations' category as laid out in their...

. Nasaf won AFC Cup in 2011 which is first international club cup for Uzbek football.

Before Uzbekistan's independence in 1991, the country used to be part of the Soviet Union football, rugby
Soviet Union national rugby union team
The USSR national rugby union team was a sporting side that represented the Soviet Union in rugby union until the early 1990s.-History:Although such tournaments as the Soviet Cup and the Soviet Championship existed, rugby never became a major sport in the USSR...

, ice hockey, basketball
Soviet Union national basketball team
The Soviet national basketball team was the basketball side that represented the Soviet Union in international competitions. After the dissolution of the Soviet Union in 1991, the successor countries all set up their own national teams...

, and handball national teams. After Uzbekistan got split up from the Soviet Union
Soviet Union
The Soviet Union , officially the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics , was a constitutionally socialist state that existed in Eurasia between 1922 and 1991....

, Uzbekistan created its own football
Uzbekistan national football team
The Uzbekistan national football team represents Uzbekistan in association football and is controlled by the Uzbekistan Football Federation, the governing body for football in Uzbekistan...

, rugby
Uzbekistan national rugby union team
The Uzbekistan national rugby union team represents Uzbekistan in international rugby union. Uzbekistan are a member of the International Rugby Board , and have yet to play in a Rugby World Cup tournament. The Rugby Federation in Uzbekistan was established in 2001.-External links:* on IRB.com...

, and futsal
Uzbekistan national futsal team
The Uzbekistan national futsal team is controlled by the Uzbekistan Football Federation, the governing body for futsal in Uzbekistan and represents the country in international futsal competitions, such as World Cup and the Asian Futsal Championship....

 national teams.

Other popular sports in Uzbekistan include rugby
Rugby football
Rugby football is a style of football named after Rugby School in the United Kingdom. It is seen most prominently in two current sports, rugby league and rugby union.-History:...

, team handball
Team handball
Handball is a team sport in which two teams of seven players each pass a ball to throw it into the goal of the other team...

, baseball
Baseball
Baseball is a bat-and-ball sport played between two teams of nine players each. The aim is to score runs by hitting a thrown ball with a bat and touching a series of four bases arranged at the corners of a ninety-foot diamond...

, ice hockey
Ice hockey
Ice hockey, often referred to as hockey, is a team sport played on ice, in which skaters use wooden or composite sticks to shoot a hard rubber puck into their opponent's net. The game is played between two teams of six players each. Five members of each team skate up and down the ice trying to take...

, basketball
Basketball
Basketball is a team sport in which two teams of five players try to score points by throwing or "shooting" a ball through the top of a basketball hoop while following a set of rules...

, and futsal
Futsal
Futsal is a variant of association football that is played on a smaller pitch and mainly played indoors. Its name is a portmanteau of the Portuguese futebol de salão and the Spanish fútbol de salón , which can be translated as "hall football" or "indoor football"...

.

Sources


Printed sources

  • Chasing the Sea: Lost Among the Ghosts of Empire in Central Asia by Tom Bissell
  • A Historical Atlas of Uzbekistan by Aisha Khan
  • The Modern Uzbeks From the 14th century to the Present: A Cultural History by Edward A. Allworth
  • Nationalism in Uzbekistan: Soviet Republic's Road to Sovereignty by James Critchlow
  • Odyssey Guide: Uzbekistan by Calcum Macleod and Bradley Mayhew
  • Uzbekistan: Heirs to the Silk Road by Johannes Kalter and Margareta Pavaloi
  • Silk Road to Ruin: Is Central Asia the New Middle East? by Ted Rall
  • Murder in Samarkand – A British Ambassador's Controversial Defiance of Tyranny in the War on Terror by Craig Murray
    Craig Murray
    Craig John Murray is a British political activist, former ambassador to Uzbekistan and former Rector of the University of Dundee....

  • Tamerlane's Children – Dispatches from contemporary Uzbekistan by Robert Rand
  • White Gold – the true cost of cotton, Still in the Fields, Slave Nation printed reports documenting environmental and social abuses in Uzbekistan's cotton fields by the Environmental Justice Foundation
    Environmental Justice Foundation
    The Environmental Justice Foundation is a [non-governmental organisation]] founded in 2001 by Steve Trent and Juliette Williams that promotes the non-violent resolution of human rights abuses and related environmental issues in the Global South...


External links


General information
  • Uzbekistan from the U.S. Library of Congress
    Library of Congress
    The Library of Congress is the research library of the United States Congress, de facto national library of the United States, and the oldest federal cultural institution in the United States. Located in three buildings in Washington, D.C., it is the largest library in the world by shelf space and...

    includes Background Notes, Country Study and major reports
  • Uzbek Publishing and National Bibliography from the University of Illinois Slavic and East European Library
  • Uzbekistan at UCB Libraries GovPubs