ISLAM and MUSLIMS IN MONGOLIA
National name: Mongol Uls
Total area: 604,247 sq mi (1,565,000 sq km)
Population (2007 est.): 2,874,127
Capital and largest city (2003 est.): Ulaan Baatar, 804,200
Monetary unit: Tugrik
Languages: Mongolian, 90%; also Turkic and Russian (1999)
Ethnicity/race: Mongol (predominantly Khalkha) 94.9%, Turkic (of which Kazak is the largest group) 5%, other (including Chinese and Russian) 0.1% (2000)
Religions: Buddhist Lamaist 50%, Islam 4%, Shamanism and Christian 4%, none 40% (2004)
Literacy rate: 99% (2003 est.)
Economic summary: GDP/PPP (2007 est.): $8.42 billion; per capita $3,200. Real growth rate: 9.9%. Inflation: 9%.
Mongolia lies in central Asia between Siberia on the north and China on the south. It is slightly larger than Alaska.
The productive regions of Mongolia—a tableland ranging from 3,000 to 5,000 ft (914 to 1,524 m) in elevation—are in the north, which is well drained by numerous rivers, including the Hovd, Onon, Selenga, and Tula. Much of the Gobi Desert falls within Mongolia.
Nomadic tribes that periodically plundered agriculturally based China from the west are recorded in Chinese history dating back more than 2,000 years. It was to protect China from these marauding peoples that the Great Wall was constructed around 200 B.C. The name Mongol comes from a small tribe whose leader, Ghengis Khan, began a conquest that would eventually encompass an enormous empire stretching from Asia to Europe, as far west as the Black Sea and as far south as India and the Himalayas. But by the 14th century, the kingdom was in serious decline, with invasions from a resurgent China and internecine warfare.
The State of Mongolia was formerly known as Outer Mongolia. It contains the original homeland of the historic Mongols, whose power reached its zenith during the 13th century under Kublai Khan. The area accepted Manchu rule in 1689, but after the Chinese Revolution of 1911 and the fall of the Manchus in 1912, the northern Mongol princes expelled the Chinese officials and declared independence under the Khutukhtu, or “Living Buddha.”
In 1921, Soviet troops entered the country and facilitated the establishment of a republic by Mongolian revolutionaries in 1924. China also made a claim to the region but was too weak to assert it. Under the 1945 Chinese-Russian Treaty, China agreed to give up Outer Mongolia, which, after a plebiscite, became a nominally independent country.
Islamic History and Muslims
Islam in Mongolia is mainly practised by the Kazakhs of
Bayan-Ölgii (88.7% of total aimag population) and Khovd (11.5% of total aimag
population) aimag in western Mongolia. Some small Kazakh communities are in
various cities and towns. The notable community is in the national capital Ulan
Bator (Nalaikh düüreg), Töv and Selenge aimags and Darkhan city.
When the Mongol Empire broke up into four
khanates, three of the four khanates became Muslim. These were the Golden Horde,
Hulagu's Ulus and Chagatai's Ulus. The Yuan Empire also embraced Muslim peoples
such as the Uyghurs.
Islamic Centers and Organizations
Show Room Co. Ltd., Ulan Bator, Bayanzurkh
Muslim Owned Business