Saturday, January 26, 2008

I did it.
I made the commitment.
I purchased the airplane ticket.
THere is no turning back.
I am headed on an overseas mission trip to Azerbaijan

Location: South Caucasus; bordered by Russia to the north, the Caspian Sea to the east, Iran to the south, and Georgia and Armenia to the west.
Area: 33,774 sq. mi. (includes Nakhchivan and Nagorno-Karabakh); slightly smaller than Maine.
Cities: Capital--Baku.
Terrain: Caucasus Mountains to the north, lowland in the central area through which the Kura River flows.
Climate: Dry, subtropical with hot summers and mild winters; forests, meadows, and alpine tundra in the mountains.

Nationality: Noun--Azerbaijani(s), Azeri. Adjective--Azerbaijani, Azeri.
Population (July 2005 est.): 7,911,974.
Population growth rate (2005 est.): 1.0%.
Net migration rate (2005 est.): -4.64 migrant(s)/1,000 population.
Ethnic groups (1999 census): Azeri 90.6%, Dagestani 2.2%, Russian 1.8%, Armenian 1.5%, other 3.9%. Note: the separatist Nagorno-Karabakh region is populated almost entirely by Armenians.
Muslim 93.4% (majority Shi'a), Russian Orthodox 2.5%, Armenian Orthodox Church 2.3%, and other 1.8%.
Languages: Azerbaijani 89%, Russian 3%, Armenian 2%, and other 6%.
Education: Literacy--97%.
Health: Infant mortality rate--83.41/1,000 live births (2000 est.). Life expectancy (2007 est.)--65.96 years.
Work force (3 million): Agriculture and forestry--42.3%; industry--6.9%; construction--4.2%; other--46.6%.


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