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Tibetan Autonomous Region

The Tibetan Autonomous Region (Xizang Zizhiqu 西藏自治区) is an administrative subdivision of the People's Republic of China.

Within the People's Republic the region is used synonomously with the the term Tibet, although many exile groups including the Government of Tibet in Exile consider the term Tibet to include regions with large Tibetan populations outside of the TAR.

Xizang Zizhiqu
Province Abbreviation(s): 藏 zang4
Capital Lhasa
 - Total
 - % water
Ranked 2nd
1,200,000 km²
 - Total (Year)
 - Density
Ranked 32nd
Administration Type Autonomous Region

Table of contents

History Main article: History of Tibet

The position of the Chinese government is that Tibet has been an integral, although autonomous, part of China for several hundred years. The position of the Government of Tibet in Exile and the Free Tibet movement[?] is that it was formerly an independent nation and was conquered by China in 1951.


Neighboring Nations: India, Nepal, Bhutan, Burma.

Neighboring Provinces: Xinjiang, Qinghai, Sichuan, Yunnan.

The Tibetan Plateau[?] is a large, elevated area, sometimes referred to as the "roof of the world", formed by the collision of the Indian and Asian tectonic plates. Most of the Himalaya mountain range lies within Tibet; Mount Everest is on the Tibet-Nepal border. Tibet also borders on Bhutan, Sikkim, India, and Pakistan.



Tibet has the lowest population density among all of the province-level administrative regions, mainly due to its mountainous and harsh geographical features.

More than 90% of the people living in Tibet are ethnic Tibetan. Other ethnic groups include Han, Menba[?], Lhoba and Hui.


Tibet is the traditional center of Vajrayana, a distinctive form of Buddhism. Before 1959, Tibet was a theocracy led by the Dalai Lama, who now lives in exile and is internationally seen by many people as being a spokesman for the Tibetan people.

Tibet is also home for spiritual tradition called Bön (alternative spelling: Bon).

Tibetan language


Miscellaneous topics

Tibet was explored by Francis Younghusband in 1902. Alexandra David-Neel visited Lhasa in 1924, and wrote several books about the country and its culture.

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