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Tajikistan (IPA: [toʤikɪsˈton] or [tɒːʤikɪsˈtɒn]), officially, the Republic of Tajikistan (Tajik: ҷумҳурии Тоҷикистон) is a mountainous landlocked country in Central Asia. It borders Afghanistan to the south, Uzbekistan to the west, Kyrgyzstan to the north, and China to the east. Most of Tajikistan's population belongs to the Tajik ethnic group, who share culture and history with the Iranian peoples and Uzbek people and speak the Tajik language. Once the location of the Samanid Empire, Tajikistan became a constituent republic of the Soviet Union in the 20th century, known as the Tajik Soviet Socialist Republic.

After independence, Tajikistan suffered from a devastating civil war which lasted from 1992 to 1997. Since the end of the war, newly-established political stability and foreign aid have allowed the country's economy to grow.

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Tajik dastarkhan meal.jpg
Pictured left: A Tajik meal: the centerpiece is plov, garnished with strips of mutton fat.

Tajik cuisine, the traditional cuisine of Tajikistan, has much in common with Russian Iranian, Afghan and Uzbek cuisines. Plov ([палав, palav] error: {{lang-xx}}: text has italic markup (help), Uzbek: palov), also called osh (Tajik: ош), is the national dish in Tajikistan, as in other countries in the region. Green tea is the national drink. Traditional Tajik meals start with a spread of dried fruit, nuts, halwa, and other sweets arrayed on the table in small dishes, and then progress to soup and meat, before finishing with plov.

Meals are usually served with non (Tajik: нон), flatbread found throughout Central Asia. Legend holds that one is not supposed to put non upside down because this will bring bad luck. Traditional Tajik soups include mainly meat and vegetable soups (such as shurbo and piti) and meat soups with noodles (such as laghmon and ugro). In the summer, Tajikistan is abundant in produce and fruit: its grapes and melons were famous throughout the former Soviet Union. The bazaars also sell pomegranates, apricots, plums, peaches, apples, pears, figs and persimmons. Tea generally accompanies every meal and is frequently offered between meals as a gesture of hospitality to guests and visitors.

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Tolib Shakhidi

Tolib-khon Shakhidi (Толиб-хон Шахиди) or Tolib Shahidi (Tajik: Толиб Шаҳидӣ/Persian: طالب شهیدی‎) is a Tajik and Soviet composer who was born on 13 March 1946 in the city of Dushanbe, Tajik SSR. He is a son of the founder of Professional Tajik Academic Music - Ziyodullo Shakhidi.

Tolib-khon Shakhidi began his musical career at the age of fourteen. He graduated from the Musical College in Dushanbe in 1965 from the Composition Class of Uri Ter-Osipov. In the same year, he entered the Moscow Tchaikovsky State Conservatory. During his student years in Moscow, he strove to be at the centre of musical activities. Conductors such as Mikhail Terion and Maxim Shostakovich performed his orchestral and instrumental compositions.

In 1972 Tolib Shakhidi graduated from the Moscow Conservatory from the class of Aram Khachaturian. 'Tolib, your time is precious,' wrote the famous master on Shakhidi's graduation photograph – and since then, this has become the composer's fundamental belief both in life and in his creative work.

Did you know...

...costing $3.5 million to construct and at a height of 165 m (541 ft), the Dushanbe Flagpole, first flown in 2011 is the tallest free-standing flagpole in the world.
Other "Did you know" facts...

Tajikistan news

From the Wikinews Tajikistan category
  • Magnitude 7.5 earthquake hits Afghanistan
  • 21 sites added to Unesco World Heritage list
  • Kyrgyzstan announces decision to close US base
  • Tajik president meets Khamenei in Tehran
  • ELF Cup kicks off in Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus
  • Afghani heroin shipment shot down in Tajikistan
  • Grenade set off outside Tajik ministry
  • Afghan-Tajik border control transferred from Russia
  • UN holding recruitment exams in under-represented countries
  • United Nations passes Declaration on human cloning

Additional news
  • November 16, 2011 Tajikistan Plans to Build World's Tallest Hydro Dam
  • October 31, 2011 Tajikistan Seals Border With Afghanistan to Block Radicalism


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Index of Tajikistan-related articles • List of cities in Tajikistan

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