Turkic speakers number about ten per cent of the population of

Afghanistan and form the third largest language group after the

Pashtu and Persian (Dari) speakers. In the late nineteenth century they were thought to represent about half of the popul-

ation of the northern provinces, but since that time there has

been a substantial immigration of Pashtuns into those provinces

and it is now doubtful whether Turkic speakers form a majority in any, although they represent a substantial portion of the

population in Fariab, Jawzjan, Balkh and Kunduz. Turkic speakers in Afghanistan inhabit the northern part of

the country between the Hindu Kush mountains (and their westerly prolongation) and the Soviet Central Asian frontier. Their numbers can only be roughly estimated for there has been no full

census in Afghanistan. They may be divided into four groups.