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Ishkashim, Afghanistan

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Title: Ishkashim, Afghanistan  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Amu Darya, Badakhshan, Wakhi language, Wakhan, Badakhshan Province, Panj River, Cross-border town naming, Ishkashim District, Ishkoshim District, Ishkoshim, Tajikistan
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Ishkashim, Afghanistan

Location in Afghanistan

Coordinates: 36°42′33″N 71°34′26″E / 36.70917°N 71.57389°E / 36.70917; 71.57389Coordinates: 36°42′33″N 71°34′26″E / 36.70917°N 71.57389°E / 36.70917; 71.57389

Country  Afghanistan
Province Badakhshan Province
Elevation[1] 8,700 ft (2,700 m)
Time zone + 4.30

Ishkashim (Persian اشکاشم), or Ashkasham, also transliterated Ishkashem or Eshkashem, is a town in Badakhshan Province in north-eastern Afghanistan,[2] the capital of Ishkashim District. It lies on the Panj River, at a point where its direction turns sharply north. Ishkashim lies opposite a town of the same name in Tajikistan, although the Tajik town is normally transliterated Ishkoshim following Tajik practice. A bridge opened in 2006 links the two towns.[3]

The town of Ishkashim lies in a fertile valley at an elevation of 3037 meters.[4] There are roughly 20 settlements in the valley, but, considering the cultivation in the valley is continuous, it could also be considered one single, larger settlement. The total population of the valley is 12120.[4]

The valley has only one harvest per year. Wheat and barley are cultivated. Poplar and chinar trees goew as well, but there is little firewood.

The climate is generally cold, but much warmer than that of neighboring areas, such as Wakhan.[1]

The people of the town are predominately Nizārī Ismā'īlī, and are called Ishkashmi. Most of them speak the Ishkashimi language.[1]

The valley lies in an important strategic area, as it commands the only route between Badakhshan, Shighnan, and Wakhan accessible during the winter. There had been a mud fort located in the central village.[1]

Ishkashim was earlier a state of the Emir of Badakhshan on the Upper Oxus River. The lands of the state stretched some 16 miles north of the town of Ishkashim, on both sides of the river, to the border of Gharan. Together with Zebak, Eshkashem was under the direct rule of the naib of Zebak, thus also placing them indirectly under the governor of Badakhshan.[1]


External links

  • Satellite map at
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