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Southern Uzbek (ISO 639-3 [uzs]), known simply as Uzbek or Afghan Uzbek in Afghanistan, is a member of the Uzbek macro language in the Turkic language family. In contrast to the northern variety, Southern Uzbek uses an Arabic-based writing system. It is spoken mainly in Afghanistan with more than 5 million speakers. Most Uzbek speakers live in northern Afghanistan in the provinces of Badghis, Baghlan, Balkh,

Faryab, Ghor, Jawzjan, Kunduz, Samangan, Sar-e Pul, Takhar, and Badakhshan provinces. In areas where the majority of people speak Uzbek, such as Faryab, Jawzjan and Sar-e Pul provinces, Uzbek is considered a third official language.
The Afghanistan Ministry of Education has produced Uzbek textbooks for grades 1-3 and are planning to produce similar materials through grade 12. Even now, Uzbek is taught in some schools up to secondary school level.

There are numerous media publications in Uzbek – written, audio and visual – which are easily available. Research and analysis has been done to describe the grammar and phonology of Uzbek and also to produce dictionaries.


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