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Ashgabat, the capital of independent (from October 27, 1991) Turkmenistan, has borne this name since 1882. According to archaeological data, settlements belonging to the Great Silk Road have existed on the territory of the present city since at least the end of the first millennium B.C. The chronological distance between them and the present city is so great, that we are not able to speak about any townbuilding continuity. That connection traces back to the beginning of XIX century, when there was a Turkmen urban settlement here, called Ashgabat. The population of the city is about 700,000 and is situated between the Kara Kum desert and the Kopet Dag mountain range.
The climite of Ashgabat as well as of all territory of Turkmenistan is hardly continental with hot and dry summer, average summer period temperature may exceed +40˙C, in winter from -6˙C up to +8˙C.
Ashgabat was destroyed by an earthquake on October 6, 1948 and approximately 100,000 people were killed. Virtually the whole city has been rebuilt since then. The avenues are wide, buildings are set back from the street, and everything looks modern. Nowadays are still a lot of construction sites in progress.

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Additional Photos by Attila Szili (atus) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2152 W: 208 N: 4536] (15856)
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