What do you know about the Central Asian nations with names ending in -stan?

The name ending ‘-stan’ means ‘land of’. In Central Asia, there are seven of them.

I have been to one – Uzbekistan [see travel notes here] – and plan to make a trip next year to five of them: Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Turkmenistan and Tajikistan.

There are two others – Afghanistan and Pakistan – but I don’t feel that it would be safe to visit them in current circumstances.

If various political movements had their way, there might be even more -stans.

For instance, the Khalistan movement is a separatist movement seeking to create a homeland for Sikhs by establishing a sovereign state, called Khālistān (Land of the Khalsa’), in the Punjab region. The proposed state would consist of land that currently forms Punjab, India and Punjab, Pakistan.


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