Nuristan


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Nuristan

(no͝orĭstăn`) [Persian,=land of light or the enlightened], region on the southern slopes of the Hindu Kush, NE Afghanistan, bordered on the E by Pakistan. Formerly called Kafiristan [land of the infidels], it is inhabited by an ethnically distinctive people (numbering about 60,000), who practiced animism until their forcible conversion to Islam in 1895–96. Inhabiting relatively isolated villages in deep, narrow mountain valleys, they grow wheat, barley, millet, peas, wine grapes, and other fruit and raise livestock (chiefly goats). A special artisan caste specializes in woodcarving, pottery making, weaving, and metalwork. The Nuristanis, divided into several tribes, speak Dardic dialects (often mutually unintelligible) belonging to a distinct branch of the Indo-European language family. Nuristan was the scene of some of the heaviest guerrilla fighting during the 1979–89 invasion and occupation of Afghanistan by Soviet forces.
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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Nuristan

 

a high-mountain region in northeastern Afghanistan. Inhabited mainly by the Nuristanis. Until the end of the 19th century, the farming tribes of Nuristan successfully defended their freedom against aggressors (including Arabs, Tamerlane, Akbar, and Nadir Shah). In 1896, Nuristan was subjugated by the emir of Afghanistan, Abder-Rahman Khan. The inhabitants were converted to Islam.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.

Nuristan

a region of E Afghanistan: consists mainly of high mountains (including part of the Hindu Kush), steep narrow valleys, and forests. Area: about 13 000 sq. km (5000 sq. miles)
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005
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Musician and composer Irgens-Moller presents this close study of the musical traditions of Nuristan, a mountainous region of Afghanistan, via the accounts and field recordings of Lennart Edelberg and Klaus Ferdinand, which they made during their 1953-1954 tour of the area.
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Taliban fighters in the remote eastern Afghan province of Nuristan have rejected calls to hold peace talks with the government.
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LAHORE, May 27 -- The Afghan police in the eastern Afghan province of Nuristan have called for help after hundreds of Taliban led by Swat Taliban leader Fazlullah engaged in fierce clashes with security forces in Afghanistan, the BBC reported on Wednesday.