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Central Asia
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Central Asia

Central Asia is a region of Asia. Various definitions of its exact composition exist.

One definition states that it covers about 9,029,000 km2, or 21% of the continent. It is the second largest region in Asia, after North Asia. Under this definition Central Asia includes the following regions:

A second definition includes:

A third definition describes Central Asia as constiting of the former Soviet Central Asian Republics:

Table of contents
1 History
2 Geography
3 Demographics
4 External link

History

Except Mongolia and the Chinese-controlled areas, the lands of Central Asia were once part of the Communist-led Soviet Union, which broke up in 1991. These nations have moved away from the Communist system, and now have a variety of political systems ranging from somewhat democratic to highly authoritarian. However, most have retained close ties to Russia, which led the Soviet Union. Most Central Asian nations are members of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization.

Geography

Central Asia is a region of high plateaus and mountains (Tian Shan), vast deserts (Kara Kum, Kyzyl Kum, Taklamakan), and treeless, grassy plains. Much of the land is too dry or too rugged for farming. A majority of the people earn a living by herding livestock. Industrial activity centers in the region's cities.

Rivers include: Amu Darya, Syr Darya, Hari Rud

Major bodies of water include: Aral Sea, Lake Balkhash

Demographics

By the most inclusive definition, more than 80 million people live in Central Asia, or about 2% of the continent's population. Of the regions of Asia, only North Asia has fewer people. It has a population density of 9 persons per km2.

External link


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