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A New Home In Siberia For Kyrgyz Migrants

More than half a million Kyrgyz nationals live in Russia, according to Russia's Federal Migration Service. Some 22,000 of them have settled in remote regions of Siberia, maintaining close-knit communities of Kyrgyz speakers. RFE/RL's Kyrgyz Service recently visited members of the Kyrgyz diaspora in the regions of Yakutia and Krasnoyarsk.

An ethnically mixed Kyrgyz and Yakut family in Yakutiya
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An ethnically mixed Kyrgyz and Yakut family in Yakutiya

Kyrgyz migrant Toichubek runs a successful cattle and horse ranch in the village of Kutugun in the Irkutsk region.
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Kyrgyz migrant Toichubek runs a successful cattle and horse ranch in the village of Kutugun in the Irkutsk region.

Children of Kyrgyz migrants at play. The Kyrgyz language is often heard in the yards outside some apartment blocks in Krasnoyarsk.
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Children of Kyrgyz migrants at play. The Kyrgyz language is often heard in the yards outside some apartment blocks in Krasnoyarsk.

Kyrgyz workers change a kitchen gas cylinder in the village of Uedei village in Yakutia.
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Kyrgyz workers change a kitchen gas cylinder in the village of Uedei village in Yakutia.

A popular Kyrgyz-style restaurant in Yakutsk
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A popular Kyrgyz-style restaurant in Yakutsk

Ulan serves in the Yakutsk police department; his wife teaches history at a local university; and their daughter Aigerim was one of the first Kyrgyz students to graduate from the local high school with top honors.
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Ulan serves in the Yakutsk police department; his wife teaches history at a local university; and their daughter Aigerim was one of the first Kyrgyz students to graduate from the local high school with top honors.

On board the train from Irkutsk to Krasnoyarsk
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On board the train from Irkutsk to Krasnoyarsk

Many migrants work as traders at the market in Yakutsk.
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Many migrants work as traders at the market in Yakutsk.

A Kyrgyz migrant in Krasnoyarsk has organized a volleyball tournament as part of his son's wedding celebration.  
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A Kyrgyz migrant in Krasnoyarsk has organized a volleyball tournament as part of his son's wedding celebration.  

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A market trader in Irkutsk
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A market trader in Irkutsk

Mechanics in Irkutsk
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Mechanics in Irkutsk

Many migrants bring goods to local markets from the massive Dordoi market near Bishkek, the Kyrgyz capital.
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Many migrants bring goods to local markets from the massive Dordoi market near Bishkek, the Kyrgyz capital.

A Kyrgyz market vendor in Irkutsk
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A Kyrgyz market vendor in Irkutsk

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The village of Kutugun in the Irkutsk region. Some Kyrgyz migrants keep horses to produce kumis, a mildly alcoholic drink made from fermented horse milk.
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The village of Kutugun in the Irkutsk region. Some Kyrgyz migrants keep horses to produce kumis, a mildly alcoholic drink made from fermented horse milk.

Horses are brought in for milking near the village of Kutugun.
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Horses are brought in for milking near the village of Kutugun.

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The road to Abakan, Khakassia
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The road to Abakan, Khakassia

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