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Islam in Central Asia

The people of Central Asia are predominantly Sunni Muslims of the Hanafi school. Small Shiite communities do exist, however, in cities like Bukhara and Samarkand, and in the Pamir Mountains of Tajikistan where the Ismaili sect of Shia Islam can be found.

Sufism, which is a form of Islamic mysticism that preaches direct communion with God, originated in the Central Asian-Persian region. Its anti-intellectual, anti-authority outlook allows it to continue to attract followers from Central Asia's nomadic population.

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