Pakistanis in Kyrgyzstan

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Pakistanis in Kyrgyzstan
Total population
Various estimates
Regions with significant populations
Bishkek
Languages
Urdu · Punjabi · English (Pakistani English) · Kyrgyz · Russian
Religion
Islam

There is a small population of Pakistanis in Kyrgyzstan, primarily students pursuing medical degrees.[1][2] Most Pakistanis are based in the capital city of Bishkek.[3] There are 200 Pakistani students in Kyrgyz State Medical Academy alone.[citation needed] They have complained to the media about the poor treatment they face at the hands of local militsiya.[3] During the 2010 South Kyrgyzstan riots, fifteen Pakistani students were taken hostage by militants in Osh, among whom one, a final-year engineering student named Ali Raza was killed. Another 263 were evacuated from the city. Students in unaffected areas were not evacuated and remained in the country.[4][5] Later that year, Pakistani businessman Zahid Jan of ZTK Co. announced plans to invest in Jalal-Abad with the construction of a juice factory there.[6]

Total population estimates vary. Kyrgyzstan's census (which records ethnicity, rather than citizenship) gives a line item for "ethnic groups of India and Pakistan" (народы Индии и Пакистана). This has fluctuated significantly over the decades, with 10 in the 1989 Soviet Census, 506 in the 1999 Census, and 41 in the 2009 Census.[7] Kyrgyzstan's ambassador to Pakistan was quoted in a Pakistan Observer interview as stating that 2,000 Pakistanis studied in Kyrgyzstan at the time.[1]

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