General Facts

by Abdullah Qazi
Last updated: March 2, 2018

Afghanistan, (which literally means Land of the Afghan) is a mountainous land-locked country located in South-Central Asia. It has a history and culture that goes back over 5000 years. Throughout its long, splendid, and sometimes chaotic history, this area of the world has been known by various names. In ancient times, its inhabitants called the land Aryana. In the medieval era, it was called Khorasan, and in modern times, its people have decided to call it Afghanistan.

Afghanistan is a heterogeneous nation, in which there are four major ethnic groups: Pashtoons (Pashtuns), Tajiks, Hazaras, and Uzbeks. Numerous other minor ethnic groups (Nuristanis, Baluchis, Turkmens, etc.) also call Afghanistan their home. While the majority of Afghans (99%) belong to the Islamic faith, there are also small numbers of Sikhs and Hindus. The official languages of the country are Pashto and Dari (Afghan Persian aka Farsi). The capital of Afghanistan is Kabul, which throughout history, was admired by many great figures, such as the great Central Asian conqueror, Zahirudeen Babur.

Official Name:
English: Islamic Republic of Afghanistan
Pashto: د افغانستان اسلامي جمهوریت
Persian: جمهوری اسلامی افغانستان
Other Facts:
  • Nationality – noun: Afghan(s) /  adjective: Afghan
  • Population: 32,564,342 (July 2015 est.)
  • Time zone:  (UTC+4:30)
  • Internet country code: .af
  • Calling code:  +93
  • Geographic coordinates: 33 00 N, 65 00 E
  • Climate: arid to semiarid; cold winters and hot summers
  • Independence Day: August 19 (from UK control over Afghan foreign affairs)
  • Right to vote: Men & women (18 and older)
  • Currency (code): afghani (AFA)
  • Fiscal year: 21 March – 20 March