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Introduction: Russia conquered the territory of present-day Uzbekistan in the late 19th century. Stiff resistance to the Red Army after the Bolshevik Revolution was eventually suppressed and a socialist republic established in 1924. During the Soviet era, intensive production of "white gold" (cotton) and grain led to overuse of agrochemicals and the depletion of water supplies, which have left the land poisoned and the Aral Sea and certain rivers half dry. Independent since 1991, the country seeks to gradually lessen its dependence on agriculture while developing its mineral and petroleum reserves. Current concerns include terrorism by Islamic militants,...

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History: Located in the heart of Central Asia between the Amu Darya and Syr Darya Rivers, Uzbekistan has a long and interesting heritage. The leading cities of the famous Silk Road -- Samarkand, Bukhara, and Khiva -- are located in Uzbekistan, and many well-known conquerors passed through the land. Alexander the Great stopped near Samarkand on his way to India in 327 B.C. and married Roxanna, daughter of ...

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International Relations: Uzbekistan's Relations with Neighbours

The perceived threat of Islamic fundamentalism in neighbouring Afghanistan, Tajikistan and increasingly Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan, where there are significant Uzbek minorities, has been a focus of Uzbek foreign policy. Relations have been strained with immediate neighbours, particular with respect to regulation of cross-border trade, movement and water and energy flows. Areas bordering Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan are mined. Uzbekistan has expressed a wish to de-mine, but has requested international assistance. This is complicated by the fact that Uzbekistan has not signed the Ottawa ...

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The first people known to have occupied Central Asia were Iranian nomads who arrived from the northern grasslands of what is now Uzbekistan sometime in the first millennium B.C. These nomads, who spoke Iranian provinces of antiquity.

The wealth of Mawarannahr was a constant magnet for invasions from the northern steppes and from China. Numerous intraregional wars were fought ...

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Area Handbook Series
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