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Kazakhstan Photo: The Persian New Year

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Men prepare platters of a Central Asian dish called plov.

Nowruz - also known as Navruz or Novruz - is a holiday celebrated in Iran, Afghanistan, and in all Central Asian countries, marking the first day of spring and the beginning of the year in the Persian calendar.

The feast is celebrated one week earlier, this year on March 14, by descendants of the Adai clan, who populate large swathes of the oil-rich western regions of Kazakhstan.

Peter Leonard is EurasiaNet's Central Asia editor.

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Kazakhstan Photo: The Persian New Year

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