Uzbek Soviet Socialist Republic

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Uzbek Soviet Socialist Republic[1]
Узбекская Советская Социалистическая Республика
Ўзбекистон Совет Социалистик Республикаси
State emblem (1981-92)
State emblem (1981-92)
Бутун дунё пролетарлари, бирлашингиз! (Uzbek)
Butun dunyo proletarlari, birlashingiz! (transliteration)
"Proletarians of all nations, unite!"
Ўзбекистон Совет Социалист Республикасининг давлат мадҳияси
Oʻzbekiston Sovet Sotsialist Respublikasining davlat madhiyasi;
"Anthem of the Uzbek Soviet Socialist Republic"
Location of Uzbekistan within the Soviet Union.
Capital Samarkand (1924–1930)
Tashkent (1930–1991)
Languages Official languages:
Uzbek · Russian
Minority languages:
Tajik · Karakalpak · Kazakh · Tatar · Koryo-mar · Bukhori · Dungan · Central Asian Arabic · Parya
Demonym Uzbek
Government Unitary Marxist-Leninist one party Soviet socialist republic
First Secretary
 •  1925–1927 (first) Vladimir Ivanovich Ivanov
 •  1989–1991 (last) Islam Karimov
Head of government
 •  1924–1937 (first) Fayzulla Khodzhayev
 •  1990–1990 (last) Shukrullo Mirsaidov
Legislature Supreme Soviet
 •  Succeeds Turkestan ASSR 27 October 1924
 •  Republic proclaimed 5 December 1924
 •  Accession of Karakalpakstan 5 December 1936
 •  State sovereignty declared 20 June 1990
 •  Renamed Republic of Uzbekistan/Independence 31 August 1991
 •  Independence recognized 25 December 1991
 •  1989 447,400 km2 (172,700 sq mi)
 •  1989 est. 19,906,000 
     Density 44/km2 (115/sq mi)
Currency Soviet ruble (руб) (SUR)
Calling code +7 36/37/436
Preceded by
Succeeded by
Bukharan People's Soviet Republic
Khorezm SSR
Turkestan Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic
Tajik SSR
Today part of  Uzbekistan
Order of Lenin Order of Lenin

Uzbekistan[2][3] (US: /ʊzˈbɛkɪˌstæn, -ˌstɑːn/, UK: /ʊzˌbɛkɪˈstɑːn, ʌz-, -ˈstæn/) is the common English name for the Uzbek Soviet Socialist Republic (Uzbek SSR; Uzbek: Ўзбекистон Совет Социалистик Республикаси, Oʻzbekiston Sovet Sotsialistik Respublikasi'; Russian: Узбекская Советская Социалистическая Республика, Uzbekskaya Sovetskaya Sotsialisticheskaya Respublika) and later, the Republic of Uzbekistan (Uzbek: Oʻzbekiston Respublikasi, Ўзбекистон Республикаси), that refers to the period of Uzbekistan from 1924 to 1991. as one of the constituent republics of the Soviet Union. It was governed by the Uzbek branch of the Soviet Communist Party, the only legal political party, from 1925 until 1990. From 1990 to 1991, it was the sovereign part of the Soviet Union with its own legislation. Sometimes, that period can be also referred to as Soviet Uzbekistan.

Beginning 20 June 1990, Uzbek SSR adopted the Declaration of State Sovereignty within its borders. Islam Karimov became the republic's inaugural president.

On 31 August 1991, the Uzbek Soviet Socialist Republic was renamed the Republic of Uzbekistan and declared independence three months before the Soviet Union's dissolution on 26 December 1991.

A doubly landlocked Soviet republic in Central Asia. Uzbekistan was bordered by Kazakhstan to the north; Tajikistan to the southeast; Kirghizia to the northeast; Afghanistan to the south; and Turkmenistan to the southwest.


The name, Uzbekistan, literally means "Home of the Free", taken from an amalgamation of uz (Turkic: "self"), bek (Turkic: "master", "bey in modern Turkish"), and -stan (Persian: "land of"). However, the official name of the republic was the Uzbek Soviet Socialist Republic as defined by its 1937 and 1978 Constitutions.


In 1924, the borders of political units in Central Asia were changed along ethnic lines determined by Vladimir Lenin’s Commissar for Nationalities, Joseph Stalin. The Turkestan ASSR, the Bukharan People's Republic, and the Khorezm People's Republic were abolished and their territories were divided into eventually five separate Soviet Socialist Republics, one of which was the Uzbek Socialist Soviet Republic, created on 27 October 1924. The next year Uzbekistan became one of the republics of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (Soviet Union). In 1928, the collectivization of land into state farms was initiated, which lasted until the late 1930s.

Uzbekistan included the Tajik ASSR until 1929, when the Tajik ASSR was upgraded to an equal status. In 1930, the Uzbek SSR capital was relocated from Samarkand to Tashkent, which remained the capital since. In 1936, Uzbekistan was enlarged with the addition of the Karakalpak ASSR taken from the Kazakh SSR in the last stages of the national delimitation in the Soviet Union. That same year in December, it was renamed to the Uzbek Soviet Socialist Republic. Further bits and pieces of territory were transferred several times between Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan after World War II.

In 1937–38, during the Great Purge, a number of alleged nationalists were executed, including Faizullah Khojaev, the first prime minister.

World War II poster commemorating the 20th anniversary of the Uzbek SSR

During World War II, many industries were relocated to Uzbekistan from vulnerable locations in western regions of the USSR to keep them safe. Large numbers of Russians, Ukrainians and other nationalities accompanied the factories, altering the demographics of the republic. The demographics situation was further aggravated by Stalin’s forced deportation of some ethnic groups suspected of collaboration with the Axis powers (including Nazi Germany) from other parts of the Soviet Union to Uzbekistan. This included large numbers of ethnic Koreans, Crimean Tatars, and Chechens.

During the Soviet period, Islam became a focal point for the anti-religious drives of Communist authorities. The government closed most mosques, and religious schools became anti-religious museums.[citation needed] On the positive side was the virtual elimination of illiteracy, even in rural areas. Only a small percentage of the population was literate before 1917; this percentage increased to nearly 100 percent under the Soviets.[4][5]

Another major development, one with future catastrophic impact, was the drive initiated in the early 1960s to substantially increase cotton production in the republic. This drive led to overzealous irrigation withdrawals of irrigation water from the Amu Darya and the subsequent Aral Sea ecological disaster.

Towards the end of the Soviet–Afghan War, several troops crossed the Uzbek border from Afghanistan as part of the its withdrawal on 15 February 1989.

The Communist Party was the only legal party in the Uzbek SSR until 1990. The first secretary, or head, of the Communist Party of Uzbekistan was consistently an Uzbek. Long-time leader of the Uzbek SSR was Sharof Rashidov, head of the Communist Party of Uzbekistan from 1959 to 1983. Islam Karimov, leader of the Communist Party of Uzbekistan since 1989 and subsequently head of that party's reincarnation, the People's Democratic Party (PDP), became president of the Uzbek SSR in 1990. On 20 June 1990, the Supreme Soviet adopted the Declaration of State Sovereignty of the Uzbek SSR, which took over the laws of the Soviet Union days after the Russian SFSR adopted theirs.


Flag of Uzbekistan/Uzbek SSR adopted in 18 November 1991

Uzbek SSR participated in the referendum in March 1991 as a part of the proposed Union of Sovereign States. This never came to pass after unsuccessful coup attempt events between 19-21 August 1991 in Moscow. In the aftermath, the Uzbek SSR was renamed the Republic of Uzbekistan and declared its independence on 31 August 1991, formally remaining a part of the Soviet Union until 26 December 1991. With the final collapse of the Soviet Union, the Uzbek SSR became the independent nation of Uzbekistan although the 1978 Constitution remained in use. The referendum was confirmed on 29 December 1991.


Uzbekistan, akin to the rest of the Soviet republics, was defined by a single-party socialist republic framework, whereby the First Secretary of the Central Committee was the head of the party, the Chairman of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet as the head of state and the Chairmen of the Council of Ministers served as the head of government in a one-party system led by the CPSU's republican branch, the Communist Party of Uzbekistan. Executive power was exercised by the government and the legislative power was vested in Supreme Soviet where it met for sessions in Tashkent.


Uzbekistan had an growing area with heavy industry and light industry developed such as the leading industries in electric power, engineering, and chemical industry.

The basis of the energy economy - large thermal power plants: Syrdarya TPP, Angren TPP Novoangren GRES, GRES Tashkent, Navoi TPP and others; Chirchik-Bozsu HPP cascade on the river Chirchik (Charvak HPP, HPP Hodzhikentskaya, Gazalkent hydroelectric and others), Farkhad hydropower plant on the Syr Darya River, Tyuyamuyun irrigation and energy complex in the Amu Darya river and others. National importance was the gas industry; the main producing areas - Bukhara (Gazly deposits and other) and Kashkadarya (Mubarak, Shurtan) area. Oil (Fergana valley, Bukhara and Surkhandarya region), brown (Angren) and Stone (Shargun field in Surkhandarya region) coal. Production of lead and zinc, tungsten, molybdenum and copper ores (Karamazarskaya group of deposits, etc.), gold (Navoi, Jizzakh region, and others).

Were developed colors (Almalyk, Chirchik and others) and ferrous metallurgy (Bekabad). In the chemical industry in particular stood out the production of mineral fertilizers (nitrogen and phosphorus) for cotton (Chirchik, Kokand, Samarkand, Fergana, Almalyk, Navoi); manufacture of chemical fibers (Fergana); plastics (Fergana, Namangan, etc.), rubber products, household chemicals, and more. Petrochemical, chemical and pharmaceutical, microbiological industry. Basic engineering industry: agriculture (machinery for the comprehensive mechanization of cotton cultivation, cotton harvesters, etc.), production of tractors, equipment for the cotton and textile industry, construction and road machines, electrical engineering; developed aviation, electronic and instrument-making industry, chemical and petroleum engineering. The main centers of Tashkent, Samarkand, Namangan, Ferghana, Andijan. Materials companies worked out cement, asbestos-cement pipes, Slate, ceramic, wall materials and other (Bekabad, Akhangaran, Angren, Navoi, Tashkent and others).

An important place in the industry engaged in traditional industries: light industry - the primary processing of cotton, silk cocoons, wool, fiber crops, raw hides, karakul pelts, and other; production of cotton (Tashkent, Andijan, Bukhara, Fergana and others) and silk (Margilan, Namangan and others) textiles, footwear, garments, carpets. Food industry (oil mills and fat - mainly oil production from cotton seeds, tinned vegetables, butter and cheese, milk, meat, etc.).


List of changes[edit]


1927 Uzbek SSR including Tajik ASSR and Khodzhent
  • Khorezm Okrug (cap: Khiva)
  • Kanimekh Raion (cap.: Kanimekh)
  • Bukhara
  • Zeravshan Okrug (cap: Kermine)
  • Kashka-Darin Okrug (cap: Bek-Budi)
  • Samarkand
  • Surkhan-Darshin Okrug (cap: Shirabad)
  • Tashkent
  • Khotshent
  • Fergan Okrug (capital: Kokand)
  • Andizhan
  • Tajik ASSR


Constitution of the USSR:

ARTICLE 26. The Uzbek Soviet Socialist Republic consists of the Bukhara, Samarkand, Tashkent, Ferghana, and Khorezm Regions, and the Kara-Kalpak Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic.[10]


Uzbek SSR, 1 December 1938


Uzbek SSR in the Soviet Union, 1989 (Navoi Oblast not shown)
  • Karakalpak ASSR
  • Khorezm Oblast
  • Bukhara Oblast
  • Samarkand Oblast
  • Kashkadarya Oblast
  • Surkhadarya Oblast
  • Jizzakh Oblast
  • Syrdarya Oblast
  • Tashkent Oblast
  • Andijan Oblast
  • Namangan Oblast
  • Fergana Oblast



  1. ^ Historical names:
    • 1924–1936: Uzbek Socialist Soviet Republic (Russian: Узбекская Социалистическая Советская Республика; Uzbekskaya Sotsialisticheskaya Sovetskaya Respublika, Uzbek: Узбекская Социалистическая Советская Республика; O'zbekiston Sotsalistik Sovet Respublikasi)
    • 1936–1991: Uzbek Soviet Socialist Republic (Russian: Узбекская Советская Социалистическая Республика; Uzbekskaya Sovetskaya Sotsialisticheskaya Respublika, Uzbek: Узбекская Советская Социалистическая Республика; O'zbekiston Sovet Sotsalistik Respublikasi)
    • 1991: Republic of Uzbekistan (Russian: Республика Узбекистан; Respublika Uzbekistan, Uzbek: Ўзбекистон Республикаси; O'zbekiston Respublikasi)
  2. ^ or rarely Uzbekia
  3. ^ CORRUPTION CAMPAIGN IN SOVIET TAKES ITS TOLL, New York Times. Published on February 8, 1985.
  4. ^ Levin, Zeev (2015-07-03). Collectivization and Social Engineering: Soviet Administration and the Jews of Uzbekistan, 1917-1939. BRILL. ISBN 9789004294714. 
  5. ^ Ubiria, Grigol (2015-09-16). Soviet Nation-Building in Central Asia: The Making of the Kazakh and Uzbek Nations. Routledge. ISBN 9781317504351. 
  6. ^ Uzbekistan Regions.
  7. ^ Syr Darya Oblast definition of Syr Darya Oblast in the Free Online Encyclopedia.
  8. ^ Uzbekistan Regions.
  9. ^ Uzbekistan Regions.
  10. ^ 1936 Constitution of the USSR, Part I.

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 59°25′00″N 24°45′00″E / 59.4167°N 24.7500°E / 59.4167; 24.7500