Republic of Uzbekistan
Political Status: Eastern portion of Turkistan Soviet Socialist Republic detached on October 27, 1924, to form Uzbek Soviet Socialist Republic within the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic; became constituent republic of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) on May 12, 1925; declared independence as Republic of Uzbekistan on August 31, 1991; present constitution adopted on December 8, 1992.
Area: 172,740 sq. mi. (447,400 sq. km.).
Population: 19,810,077 (1989C); 27,579,000 (2007E).
Major Urban Centers (2005E): TASHKENT (2,167,000), Namangan (375,000), Samarkand (360,000), Andizhan (323,000).
Official Language: Uzbek. Russian remains the principal everyday language.
Monetary Unit: Sum (official rate November 1, 2008: 1,348.10 sums = $1US).
President: Islam A. KARIMOV; elected to the new office of president by the Supreme Soviet on March 24, 1990; reconfirmed for a five-year term ...