Afghanistan people are ethnically and linguistically mixed due to the location astride historic trade and invasion routes leading from Central Asia into South and Southwest Asia. Afghanistan can be considered a country of minorities as there is no group serving as a majority. There are several types of ethnic groups.
Pashtuns are the largest ethnic group and Tajiks are considered the second largest group. The Hazaras and Uzbeks tied for third, followed by the Aimaq, Turkmen, Baluch, Pashayee, Nooristani and other small groups. Each one of these ethnic groups as their own culture and tradition as well as their language.
Dari (Persian) and Pashtu are the two official languages of the country. Dari is spoken by at least half of the population, where Pashtu is spoken widely in the south, east and south west. Uzbek and Turkmen are spoken in the north. Smaller groups through out the country also speak more than 70 other languages and numerous dialects. The name Afghan, though (historically) synonymous with Pashtun, is promoted as a national identity. It is, however, hard to combine the varying groups. Often the Pashtun are referred to as Afghans while other groups hold to their ethnic names (e.g., Tajiks are known as Tajiks,(Dari Speakers) Turkmens are known as Turkmens, etc.
The citizens of Afghanistan are in many ways somewhat distinct from the notion of ethnic Afghans as a result of this understanding. In order to solve the problem, in recent years, the term Afghanistan (which means land of Pashtuns or Afghanistan as analogous to Uzbekistan, Pakistan, or Tajikistan) has been suggested for the citizens of Afghanistan in contrast to (ethnic) Afghans who would be the Pashtuns.
Afghanistan people have two key features, first they are very tough and the reason that they have survived years of war and political strife. Afghans are thought to be some of the toughest people in the world. Second, they are very hospitable which is an ingrained part of the culture. As a matter of fact, Afghans are using proverbs or common sayings when talking or when they are trying to deliver a message to some one clearly. It's more common in every part of the region and every one knows at least a few proverbs as a part of the Afghan culture.
Afghanistan was an irrigator country and most Afghans in southern and northern parts of the country were farmers as well as livestock holders. However, in last three decades of conflict,and drought, many formers have left the profession either killed or fled to neighboring countries mostly in Iran and Pakistan, and become refugees.
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