Ashgabat (Turkmen: Aşgabat; Ашгабат, pronounced [ɑʃʁɑˈbɑt], Persian: عشق آباد; Russian: Ашхабад), formerly named Poltoratsk (Russian: Полтора́цк, IPA: [pəltɐˈratsk]) between 1919 and 1927, is the capital and the largest city of Turkmenistan. It is situated between the Karakum Desert and the Kopet Dag mountain range in Central Asia. It is also near the Iran-Turkmenistan border.
The city was founded in 1881 on the basis of an Ahal Teke tribal village, and made the capital of the Turkmen Soviet Socialist Republic in 1924.
Volgograd (Russian: Волгогра́д), formerly Tsaritsyn (Цари́цын) (1589–1925), and Stalingrad (Сталингра́д) (1925–1961), is the largest city and the administrative centre of Volgograd Oblast, Russia. The city lies on the western bank of the Volga, covering an area of 859.4 square kilometres (331.8 square miles), with a population of over 1 million residents. Volgograd is the fifteenth-largest city in Russia, the second-largest city on the Southern Federal District, and the fourth-largest city on the Volga.
The city was founded as the fortress of Tsaritsyn in 1589. By the nineteenth century, Tsaritsyn became an important river-port and commercial centre, leading to its population expanding rapidly. During the Russian Civil War, Tsaritsyn came under Soviet control. On April 10, 1925, the city was renamed Stalingrad in honor of Joseph Stalin.
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