Section I. Religious Demography
The U.S. government estimates the total population at 30.3 million (midyear 2019 estimate). According to U.S. government estimates, 88 percent of the population is Muslim, while the Ministry of Foreign Affairs estimates 93-94 percent of the population is Muslim. Most Muslims are Sunni of the Hanafi school. The government states approximately 1 percent of the population is Shia of the Jaafari school, concentrated in the provinces of Bukhara and Samarkand. Approximately 3.5 percent of the population is Russian Orthodox, according to reports, and statistics suggest this number continues to decline with ethnic Russian and other Orthodox emigration. The government states the remaining 3 percent includes small communities of Catholics, ethnic Korean Christians, Baptists, Lutherans, Seventh-day Adventists, evangelical Christians, Pentecostals, Jehovah’s Witnesses, Buddhists, Baha’is, members of the International Society of Krishna Consciousness, and atheists. According to members of the Jewish community, the population, a mix of Ashkenazi and Sephardic (Bukharian) Jews, numbers fewer than 10,000. Of those, approximately 6,000 Ashkenazi and fewer than 2,000 Bukharian Jews, are concentrated in Tashkent, Bukhara, Samarkand, and the Fergana Valley. The Jewish population continues to decline because of emigration.