Tajikistan - Country history and economic development

875. Samanid dynasty, with its Persian speaking court, begins a 175-year reign over territory that includes much of today's Uzbekistan and Tajikistan.

1895. A treaty signed by Russia and Britain determines the southern borders and what becomes Eastern Turkestan, a Russian protectorate, which covers the territory of today's Central Asian republics and some parts of eastern China. The 1895 treaty considers Amudarya as the border between Russian and British influence.

1920. The Bolshevik army occupies Bukhara, forcing the emir to flee to Afghanistan.

1924. Tajikistan becomes an autonomous republic within the Soviet Socialist Republic of Uzbekistan.

1926. The first Tajik language newspaper in Soviet Tajikistan begins publication.

1929. Territory is annexed from Uzbekistan by orders of Stalin, and included as part of Tajikistan. Tajikistan is then declared an independent Soviet Socialist republic.

1930. Aggressive collectivization of agriculture is imposed on Tajikistan by Soviet planners, with an eye on expansion of cotton monoculture (the cultivation of a single crop).

1937. The Great Terror of Stalin purges much of the local communist elite, replacing them in favor of ethnic Russians and Europeans.

1991. Tajikistan declares independence from the Soviet Union. A coalition government is formed involving elements of the Islamic opposition as well as former communists. By June, civil war breaks out between supporters of the former communist incumbent president, Rahmon Nabiyev, and the Islamic and secular opposition groups. Shortly after, parliament appoints Imomali Rahmonov as head of state after Nabiyev's resignation in September. Civil war between government supporters and the Islamic and democratic forces begins.

1993. UTO, the Islamic opposition, which is based in Afghansitan and partly in Iran, forms an effective guerrilla force that carries out cross-border raids and eventually captures much of east-central Tajikistan.

1994. Rahmonov defeats a candidate from northern Tajikistan in a controversial election with 58 percent of the vote.

1995. Parliamentary elections are held; no opposition parties are allowed to take part.

1997. A peace accord brokered by the UN, Iran, and Russia is signed in Moscow between the government and the UTO. Refugees begin to return from Afghanistan.

1999. Voters re-elect Rahmonov as president. The UN's Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) and Human Rights Watch accuse the government of vote rigging, manipulation of the media, intimidation of opponents and illegal disqualification of several political parties.

2000. The pro-government People's Democratic Party takes the majority of seats in elections to the new bicameral parliament.

2001. Despite relative calm in the country, assassinations occur sporadically and the drug trade is on the rise.

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