19 Facts About Central Asia


Central Asia is a region of Asia that stretches from the Caspian Sea in the west to western China and Mongolia in the east, and from Afghanistan and Iran in the south to Russia in the north.

FactSnippet No. 613,476

Current geographical location of Central Asia was formerly part of the historic Turkistan known as Turan.

FactSnippet No. 613,477

Central Asia was historically closely tied to the Silk Road trade routes, acting as a crossroads for the movement of people, goods, and ideas between Europe and the Far East.

FactSnippet No. 613,478

The Russian geographer Nikolai Khanykov questioned the latitudinal definition of Central Asia and preferred a physical one of all countries located in the region landlocked from water, including Afghanistan, Khorasan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uyghuristan, and Uzbekistan.

FactSnippet No. 613,479

Central Asia is a region of varied geography, including high passes and mountains, vast deserts (Kyzyl Kum, Taklamakan), and especially treeless, grassy steppes.

FactSnippet No. 613,480

The vast steppe areas of Central Asia are considered together with the steppes of Eastern Europe as a homogeneous geographical zone known as the Eurasian Steppe.

FactSnippet No. 613,481

From here Persian and Islamic civilisation penetrated Central Asia and dominated its high culture until the Russian conquest.

FactSnippet No. 613,482

Central Asia is land-locked and not buffered by a large body of water, temperature fluctuations are often severe, excluding the hot, sunny summer months.

FactSnippet No. 613,483

The largest biome in Central Asia is the temperate grasslands, savannas, and shrublands biome.

FactSnippet No. 613,484

Central Asia contains the montane grasslands and shrublands, deserts and xeric shrublands and temperate coniferous forests biomes.

FactSnippet No. 613,485

The eastern part of Central Asia, known as East Turkestan or Xinjiang, was incorporated into the People's Republic of China, having been previously subjugated by the Manchu Empire.

FactSnippet No. 613,486

Soviet areas of Central Asia saw much industrialisation and construction of infrastructure, but the suppression of local cultures, hundreds of thousands of deaths from failed collectivisation programmes, and a lasting legacy of ethnic tensions and environmental problems.

FactSnippet No. 613,487

Central Asia has an indigenous form of improvisational oral poetry that is over 1000 years old.

FactSnippet No. 613,488

Kazakhstan is the largest country in Central Asia accounting for more than 60 percent of the region's gross domestic product.

FactSnippet No. 613,489

Central Asia has long been a strategic location merely because of its proximity to several great powers on the Eurasian landmass.

FactSnippet No. 613,490

Central Asia has been divided, redivided, conquered out of existence, and fragmented time and time again.

FactSnippet No. 613,491

Central Asia has served more as the battleground for outside powers than as a power in its own right.

FactSnippet No. 613,492

Central Asia had both the advantage and disadvantage of a central location between four historical seats of power.

FactSnippet No. 613,493

Region, along with Russia, is part of "the great pivot" as per the Heartland Theory of Halford Mackinder, which says that the power which controls Central Asia—richly endowed with natural resources—shall ultimately be the "empire of the world".

FactSnippet No. 613,494