DEMOGRAPHIC & RELIGION
The entire population of Azerbaijan exceeded 9.574 million as of November 1, 2014.
Urban residents comprise 53,1% of the whole population as of 1 July 2013, with the rural population of 46,9%.
According to estimates, 91,6% of the population of the Republic are Azerbaijani, 8,4% are representative of other nationalities.
Among them are : Russians – 1,3% / Lezgins – 2,0% / Talysh – 1,3%
The rest of the population is made up of Avars, Turks, Tatars, Ukrainians, Tsakhurs, Georgians (Ingiloys), Kurds, Tats and representatives of other minority nationalities.
Azerbaijani people and culture are widespread – according to various estimations, the general numbers of ethnic Azerbaijanis across the world equal approximately 35 to 50 million.
Average expected lifespan (2008) in Azerbaijan is: 72.6 years
specifically for men – 69.9 years / and women – 75.4 years.
The state language of Azerbaijan, Azerbaijani, belongs to the Oguz sub-group (together with Gagauz, south coast dialect of Crimean-Tatar, Turkish and Turkmen languages) of the south-west branch of Turkic languages, but has features typical of languages of Kipchak area.
Modern Azerbaijani language has different dialects:
– Eastern group (Baku, Quba, Shamakhi dialects, also Lankaran and Mugan dialects);
– Western group (Ganja, Gazakh, Karabakh and Ayrum dialects);
– Northern group (Sheki and Zaqatala-Qakh dialects);
– Southern group (Nakhchivan, Ordubad dialects).
There are a variety of ‘own’ dialects in Azerbaijani language that are widespread in Iran, Iraq, Russia (Dagestan), Georgia and Turkey.
The Day of Azerbaijani alphabet and language is annually celebrated on 1 August.
The People of Khynalyq
The people of Khynalyq are one of the ethnic nations of Azerbaijan. Among the ethnic minorities in Azerbaijan they are distinguished with unique ethnographic features. This ethnicity belongs to the Caucasian language family, and for their location around Shahdag they are called in historical and ethnographic literature as “Shahdag peoples”. The people of Khynalyq are considered to be the most ancient inhabitants of Azerbaijan. This group has only this language and this single settlement in the world. In other words, in the ethnic map of the world there is only one village of Khynalyq and its language, which belongs to the Guba region of Azerbaijan.
For more information about the demographics of Azerbaijan:
According to the Constitution, Azerbaijan is a secular state, so religious life is separated from the governing of the country. However, many religious beliefs co-exist there, since Azerbaijan is a multinational country inhabited by numerous ethnic groups. Overall the most common religion in Azerbaijan is Shia Islam, however Jewish and Christian religions also live harmoniously alongside as a minority.
Religious beliefs in the territory of Azerbaijan have a long history. Zoroastrianism, dominated the country from I millennium BC under Akheminids and Sasanids and was considered a state religion of the Persian Empire (Azerbaijan was a part of this state by that time). Even now Zoroastrianism is popular among the local people and one of the most respected holidays is of Zoroastrian origin considered Novruz Bayrami.
Islam is the main religion of Azerbaijan. 99.2 percent of the country’s population are Muslim. About 85 percents of Azerbaijani Muslims are Shia Islam while 15 percent are Sunni Muslims. Such division is directly connected with Azerbaijan’s proximity and relationship with Iran, the only country where the state religion is considered Shia Islam.