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Tashkurgan JK

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Tashkurgan JK is located at 10,000 feet above sea level in the province of Xin Jiang, China. Actually every village has
its own JK, but foreigners are not welcome--govt orders. Therefore, although the local Ismailis, who call themselves Tajik, visit everyday, it is kept locked when not in use. This town used to be entirely Ismaili when it was isolated for centuries, but now there are many Uyghurs and Han living, working and running businesses there. Ismaili women are
easily identified by their hats with a cloth tied from the top and around the chin. If you see blond people, chances are that they would be Ismaili, because everybody else has black hair. They recite the same salwat as we do, and once a year the clans like to visit their own 'kabr'--burial ground or cemetery. They make a picnic of it and remember their dead and pray for them and greet and exchange news and catch up and contribute some food as well as take some home. A good meeting spot for Ismailies is a restaurant called ROOF OF THE WORLD, run by 4 Ismailis, two local and two from the northern areas of Pakistan. Pakistani men do come across the border, looking for opportunities to do business etc.

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