Kyrgyzstan is nestled in the Tien Shan mountain range of Central Asia, bordered by China, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan. This is a nation of ragged and wild mountainscapes, nomadic traditions, and unique yurts that many shepherds call home. The country also boasts great ethnic diversity, including Turkics, Europeans, and East Asians. Yet its agricultural economy is stymied by its mountainous, landlocked location.
Kyrgyzstan gained independence from the USSR in 1991, but the new government was characterized by further corruption and heavy-handedness. Deep ethnic, political, and communal divisions have also led to instability and violence. Read More