Situated at the northern end of the Karakum desert in the oasis of Khiva, Dashoguz was founded at the beginning of XIX century as a fortress for the control of the region. The city, that at the moment has about 137,000 inhabitants, is nowadays an important agricultural and industrial centre not far from the Uzbek border. The waters of the nearby river Amudarya and of some of its tributaries make it possible in the region the intensive cultivation of cotton and of jute, materials that feed local textile industries. The city, that has also some food industries, is an important railway junction on the line connecting Turkmenabat to Kungrad and has an airport. In 1992 the original Russian name Tashauz was modified into the Turkmen ver-sion Dashoguz.

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