Nomadic Herders Struggle to Survive in Northwest China (Video)

There are nearly 1.4 million ethnic Kazakhs living in Xinjiang Province, which borders Mongolia, Russia, and Kazakhstan.

Many live as nomadic herders producing big-tailed sheep in the Altai Mountains.

Every year they move their yurts and herds from the mountain passes in the summer to the warmer valleys in the winter. But this year there was a bad drought, and sheep aren’t selling for a good price.

The Kazakh nomads have lived in this area for centuries, and left the Soviet Union to maintain their culture. As Chinese authorities increase restrictions on ethnic minorities, some are considering returning to Kazakhstan especially with the promise of financial support and cultural autonomy there.

 

A Kazakh herder with horse and dogs. (Airunp/Wikimedia Commons)

A Kazakh herder with horse and dogs. (Airunp/Wikimedia Commons)

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