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keskiviikko 6. tammikuuta 2016

Uzbekistan, Cool Facts #88

<= 87. Kyrgyzstan                                                                                               89. Turkmenistan =>



1. Double landlocked country 

Uzbekistan and Liechtenstein are the only double landlocked countries in the world. That means that these two countries don't have a coastline by an ocean and neither don't their neighboring countries have.

Uzbekistan is in the heart of Central Asia and as a proof of that it has a border with all the Central Asian countries, which are Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan but also with Afghanistan.


Green = landlocked countries, Purple = double landlocked

2. Samarkand

Samarkand is one of the oldest continuously inhabited city in Central Asia. Samarkand was one of the centres of economy and education in the ancient times. Samarkand prospered from its location on the Silk Road between China and the Mediterranean region. Samarkand has many notable landmarks as it's full of beautiful mosques like the Bibi-Khanym Mosque. 
Bibi-Khanym Mosque



3. Uzbek National Hero Timur Lenk

Timur Lenk was the founder of the Timurid Empire in the 1300s. He was born in the city of Kesh in the Chagatai Khanate, which was in located in the current Uzbekistan. Timur Lenk defeated the Mamluks of Egypt and Syria, Ottoman Empire and the Delhi Sulhanate becoming the most powerful ruler in the Muslim world. 

The Timurid Empire was founded from these conquests. As a result of Timur Lenk's conquests, one of the world's four original Qurans is kept in Tashkent. Timur Lenk's mighty empire was short-lived as it fragmented shortly after his death. 


Timurid Empire map
One of the oldest Qurans in Tashkent

4. Tashkent Metro 

Tashkent in Uzbekistan and Almaty in Kazakhstan are the only subway systems in the former Soviet Union countries. It has three lines and twenty-nine stations. The Tashkent metro is one of the most ornate and beautiful metro systems in the world.

Some prominent Uzbek artists and architects participated designing the stations. Unfortunately it's prohibited to take pictures inside the beautiful metro system, because they are considered military installations.





5. Andijan massacre 

There was a notorious massacre by the government in Andijan in the Fergana Valley in 2005. The people protested against the government of Islam Karimov and wanted him to step down as the president. The government started firing against the protestors killing a lot of civilians and stated afterwards that they only had killed terrorists.

Hundreds of people were killed and buried in mass graves. The government denied all the accusations and drove out all the foreign press members. This event worsened Uzbekistan's relationship with the western countries.

Andijan massacre


Timeline

327 BC The Macedonian ruler Alexander the Great conquered Samarkand from the Persians
500s Uzbekistan part of a Turkic nomad empire
700s Arabs bring Islam to the region
1220 The Mongols conquer the area
1225 Gengis Khan's son Chagatai rules the area in the current Uzbekistan
1300s Khan Öz Beg or Uzbeg ruled the Golden Horde
1709 Kokand Khanate got separated from Bukhara
1800s Russia reaches Central Asia as the Khanates became weaker
1865 Tashkent was conquered and made the capital of the Russian Turkestan
1876 Bukhara and Khiva Khanates were made Russian protectorates and Kokand lost its autonomy
1916 The Uzbeks rebelled against the compulsory military service
1919 Russian civil war ends and Uzbekistan becomes part of the Turkestan Soviet Republic
1924 Turkestan is split into separate Soviet states
1929 Tajikistan is separated from Uzbekistan
1930s The anti-Russian Basmachi movement rebelled against the collectivization of farms
1991 Uzbekistan becomes independent and Islam Karimov becomes the first president
2005 Uprising in Andijan in Fergana Valley, which was suppressed violently by the government

Sources: 
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Andijan_massacre
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tashkent_Metro
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Uzbekistan 

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