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Osh (ôsh), city (1993 pop. 233,300), capital of Osh region, S Kyrgyzstan, in the Fergana Valley. Terminus of the Osh-Khorugh highway and Kyrgyzstan's second largest city, Osh has silk, cotton, textile, and food-processing industries; it also is a center of the illegal opium trade. One of the oldest settlements of Central Asia, Osh was for centuries a major silk-production center, strategically situated on a trade route to India. The old city adjoins the larger modern section. Sulayman Mt., or Taht-I-Suleiman [Solomon's throne], is a place of Muslim pilgrimage. Osh was the scene of violent Uzbek-Kyrgyz ethnic clashes in 1990 and again in 2010.
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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



a city; administrative center of Osh Oblast, Kirghiz SSR. Osh is situated where the Akbura River flows out of the foothills of the Alai Range into the Fergana Valley, at an elevation of 870–1,110 m. The city has a railroad station, and it is a junction of highways to a number of cities, including Frunze, Khorog, Andizhan, and Kyzyl-Kiia. In 1974 the population was 143,000 (33,000 in 1939, 65,000 in 1959, and 120,000 in 1970).

One of the oldest cities in Middle Asia, Osh was considered the third largest city in Fergana as early as the tenth century. Trade routes from Middle Asia to China and India passed through the city. In 1876, after the conquest of the Kokand Khanate, Osh was incorporated into Russia. Under Soviet power, it has been transformed into a major industrial center. (In Kirghizia, it is second in importance to the city of Frunze.)

Osh produces a third of the oblast’s industrial output. Light industry is the leading branch. Located in the city are the largest textile combine in Middle Asia, a silk combine, a cotton-ginning plant, and a garment and footwear factory. Food processing, a well-developed branch of industry, is represented by a meatpacking plant, a milk plant, and a fruit wine combine. Machine building and metalworking are also among the city’s industries (a pump plant and a motor-vehicle repair plant). The production of building materials is being developed (a building materials combine, reinforced-concrete products plants, and a brickyard). There is a furniture factory in the city.

Among the educational institutions in Osh are a pedagogical institute; the general technical department of the Frunze Polytechnic Institute; agricultural, Soviet trade, and construction technicums; a branch of a road transportation technicum; and pedagogical and music schools. Also located in the city are the Uzbek Theater of Musical Drama, a museum of regional studies, and a tourist center.


Aidashev, T. Gorod Osh. Frunze, 1968.
Daniiarov, S., and K. Rakhmanov. Po solnechnoi Kirgizii. Frunze, 1968.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
OSH, Kyrgyzstan: Kyrgyzstan's interim president said Friday that 2,000 people may have died in the ethnic clashes that have rocked the country's south -- many times her government's official estimate -- as she made her first visit to a riot-hit city since the unrest erupted.
Summary: Osh, Kyrgyzstan, June 23, 2010, SPA -- Kyrgyzstan&'s central government pledged to help ethnic Uzbeks vote in a referendum on a new constitution on Sunday, encouraging participation by a minority group that has supported the interim administration, AP reported.
Summary: OSH, Kyrgyzstan: Some 400,000 people have been displaced by ethnic violence in southern Kyrgyzstan, the United Nations announced Thursday, dramatically increasing the official estimate of a crisis that has left throngs of desperate, fearful refugees without enough food and water in grim camps along the Uzbek border.
The senior officials of the Border Services of Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan met in the city of Ferghana, Uzbekistan on September 30.The outcomes of the collaborative actions on protection of the Kyrgyz-Uzbek border, as well as improvement of interaction, timely exchange of information and improvement of the operation of the border checkpoints were discussed during this meeting.The next meeting will be held in November in the city of Osh, Kyrgyzstan.
Summary: OSH, Kyrgyzstan, Jun 18, SPA -- Kyrgyzstan&'s interim president on Friday made her first visit to the riot-hit southern town of Osh, vowing to restore the battered city and work for the return of hundreds of thousands of Uzbek refugees who fled deadly ethnic violence, according to AP.
Summary: OSH, Kyrgyzstan: Kyrgyz troops patrolled the burned-out streets of the southern city of Osh on Wednesday to maintain a fragile peace between ethnic groups after days of fighting that forced tens of thousands to flee.
Summary: Osh, Kyrgyzstan, June 15, 2010, SPA -- A tense calm was felt in the streets of Osh Tuesday as Kyrgyzstan&'s interim government sent more security forces to the area to quell violent ethnic clashes.
Summary: OSH, Kyrgyzstan: A Moscow-led security group said on Monday it would consider sending a military force to southern Kyrgyzstan to quell ethnic clashes that have killed at least 124 people in the impoverished Central Asian state.The clashes between Kyrgyz and Uzbek residents in the cities of Osh and Jalalabad began late on Thursday and escalated over the weekend
Summary: OSH, Kyrgyzstan, June 14, 2010, SPA -- Thousands of Uzbeks fleeing southern Kyrgyzstan amassed at the border Monday, as the deadliest ethnic violence in decades left entire city blocks burned to the ground and scores of people dead.
Summary: OSH, Kyrgyzstan: Kyrgyz mobs burned Uzbek villages and slaughtered their residents Sunday as ethnic rioting engulfed new areas in southern Kyrgyzstan.