Dushanbe, Islamic Culture Capital for 2010

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Dushanbe, the city of peace, the capital of the Republic of Tajikistan, was designated as Capital of Islamic Culture for the year 2010.
The city was named after Dushanbe River that runs through it, from the north to the south.

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Ismail Somoni monument

It was selected as the capital-city of the Republic of Tajikistan at the beginning of 1924.

Accommodating a population of about one million people, Dushanbe is located in the middle of the Hissar Valley and is surrounded by mountains (mountains represent 93% of Tajikistan area).

Dushanbe is divided into four districts, namely Ismail Somoni, Abuali Ibn Sina, Firdavsi and Shokhmansur.

Dushanbe is home to all administrations of the government of Tajikistan, as well as the Presidential Palace, the Parliament along with all the ministries and governmental institutions.

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Palace of government in Dushanbe

It also hosts higher education institutions, the most important of which are the Tajik Academy of Sciences, Academy of Pedagogical Sciences, Tajik State National University, Tajik State Medical University, Tajik State Pedagogical University, and other academic institutions. Besides, the city has more than ten universities, a hundred elementary and secondary schools, along with a thousand kindergartens.
The city has a rich history with many historical sites such as Tajikistan National Museum, the National Museum of Antiquities of Tajikistan, Firdawsi National Library and the Tajik Museum of Ethnography.
It also provides a wonderful environment filled with beautiful public parks such as the Central Park and the beautiful Victory Park which, thanks to its location on a high hill, offers the visitor a good panoramic view of the whole city of Dushanbe.
The city has four major football stadiums which host local, regional and international tournaments.
Dushanbe can be accessed through the huge portals located at its four corners. The portals also serve as boundaries of the city.

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Garden poet Rudaki in front of the presidential palace

Most of the factories are based in Dushanbe such as the cement factory and textile factory. The city also hosts the largest and most beautiful hotels such as Tajikistan Hotel and Avesto Hotel, which are both located in the heart of the city.
Dushanbe is famous for being one of the major old cities located on the ancient Silk Road. It is considered as the biggest scientific and cultural center in the country, for it hosts the Tajik Academy of Sciences and most of the universities. Today, Dushanbe is considered as the city of peace, friendship and brotherhood. It was declared by UNESCO as a City of Peace in the region of Asia and the Pacific.
Dushanbe also produced such renowned scholars, such as Sadriddin Aini, Abolqasem Lahouti, Mirza Torsan Zade, Mirsaid Mirshakar, Momen Qanaat and Layeq Shir Ali.

The city is well-known for its amazing beauty and pleasant climate; it is teeming with greenery and wide tree-lined streets. It has a lot of tourist sites which attract tourists from different parts of the world and offer natural treatment (Hadji Abi-Karam Region). Markets are another tourist attraction where visitors can find a variety of fruits and vegetables. The city abounds with water resources, as well as hot water sources which are used for curative purposes.
More than twenty local newspapers and magazines are published in Dushanbe, mainly Minbar-I Khalq, Sada-I Sharq, Asia-Plus, Vecherny Dushanbe (Evening Dushanbe), and Najot.

The main Islamic landmarks in the city include:

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Haji Yacob Mosque

Haji Yakoub Mosque which was founded 200 years ago. It is located at the heart of the city. It can receive up to 3,000 people. The Mosque is famous for its dome and tall minarets.

Abu Hanifa Islamic Institute is another major Islamic landmark in Dushanbe, where more than 400 students are currently studying religious sciences. The Institute hosts a faculty for the memorization of the Holy Quran whose graduate work as imams or as teachers in the Islamic schools that are spread across the Republic.

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Minaret of Haji Yacob Mosque

Haji Shokhmansur Mosque is located at the heart of the capital-city.

The Islamic Center, which will be established with the support of State of Qatar, will be one of the biggest centers as it will accommodate more than 70,000 persons and will contain a mosque, a library, a school, an institute and halls for conferences and courses.

In 2009, Dushanbe held an international ceremony under the patronage of H.E. President of Tajikistan to celebrate the great imam Abu Hanifa al-Nu’maan bin Thabet. In attendance of the ceremony were guests from more than fifty states, most of which were Muslim.
In 2010, Dushanbe will celebrate the 1200th anniversary of the imam of hadith, Muhammad Ibn Ismail, popularly known as Al-Bukhari.
Under the patronage of H.E. President of the Republic of Tajikistan, the Holy Quran was translated and published into the Tajik language and distributed to the Tajik citizens.
Dushanbe is experiencing a significant wave of translation activity; many Islamic, historical and cultural books are translated and are freely sold in the different libraries scattered across the Republic.
Considering the abundance of Islamic scientific and historical manuscripts and works in the city, a special scientific center was set up to preserve this rich heritage.