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Tajikistan:
Geography

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Background
Definition
The Tajik people came under Russian rule in the 1860s and 1870s, but Russia's hold on Central Asia weakened following the Revolution of 1917. Bolshevik control of the area was fiercely contested and not fully reestablished until 1925. Much of present-day Sughd province was transferred from the Uzbekistan SSR to newly formed Tajikistan SSR in 1929. Ethnic Uzbeks form a substantial minority in Sughd province. Tajikistan became independent in 1991 following the breakup of the Soviet Union, and it is now in the process of strengthening its democracy and transitioning to a free market economy after its 1992-97 civil war. There have been no major security incidents in recent years, although the country remains the poorest in the former Soviet sphere. Attention by the international community in the wake of the war in Afghanistan has brought increased economic development and security assistance, which could create jobs and increase stability in the long term. Tajikistan is in the early stages of seeking World Trade Organization membership and has joined NATO's Partnership for Peace.
Location
Definition
Central Asia, west of China
Geographic coordinates
Definition
39 00 N, 71 00 E
Map references
Definition
Asia
Area
Definition - World rank and map
total: 143,100 sq km
land: 142,700 sq km
water: 400 sq km
Area - comparative
Definition
slightly smaller than Wisconsin
Land boundaries
Definition
total: 3,651 km
border countries: Afghanistan 1,206 km, China 414 km, Kyrgyzstan 870 km, Uzbekistan 1,161 km
Coastline
Definition
0 km (landlocked)
Maritime claims
Definition
none (landlocked)
Climate
Definition
midlatitude continental, hot summers, mild winters; semiarid to polar in Pamir Mountains
Terrain
Definition
Pamir and Alay Mountains dominate landscape; western Fergana Valley in north, Kofarnihon and Vakhsh Valleys in southwest
Elevation extremes
Definition
lowest point: Syr Darya (Sirdaryo) 300 m
highest point: Qullai Ismoili Somoni 7,495 m
Natural resources
Definition
hydropower, some petroleum, uranium, mercury, brown coal, lead, zinc, antimony, tungsten, silver, gold
Land use
Definition - World rank and map
arable land: 6.52%
permanent crops: 0.89%
other: 92.59% (2005)
Irrigated land
Definition
7,220 sq km (2003)
Total renewable water resources
Definition
99.7 cu km (1997)
Freshwater withdrawal (domestic/industrial/agricultural)
Definition
total: 11.96 cu km/yr (4%/5%/92%)
per capita: 1,837 cu m/yr (2000)
Natural hazards
Definition
earthquakes and floods
Environment - current issues
Definition
inadequate sanitation facilities; increasing levels of soil salinity; industrial pollution; excessive pesticides
Environment - international agreements
Definition
party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Environmental Modification, Ozone Layer Protection, Wetlands
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
Geography - note
Definition
landlocked; mountainous region dominated by the Trans-Alay Range in the north and the Pamirs in the southeast; highest point, Qullai Ismoili Somoni (formerly Communism Peak), was the tallest mountain in the former USSR


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