Tuva, or Tyva, is a federal subject of Russia (a republic, also defined in the Constitution of the Russian Federation as a state). It lies in the geographical center of Asia, in southern Siberia. The republic borders the Altai Republic, the Republic of Khakassia, Krasnoyarsk Krai, Irkutsk Oblast, and the Republic of Buryatia in Russia and Mongolia to the south. Its capital is the city of Kyzyl. It has a population of 307,930 (2010 census).
From 1921 until 1944, Tuva constituted a sovereign, independent nation, under the name of Tannu Tuva, officially, the Tuvan People's Republic, or the People's Republic of Tannu Tuva. The independence of Tannu Tuva, however, was recognized only by its neighbors: the Soviet Union and Mongolia.
A majority of the people are ethnic Tuvans who speak Tuvan as their native tongue, while Russian is spoken natively by the Russian minority; both are official and widely understood in the country. Tuva is governed by the Great Khural, which elects a chairman for a four-year term.
The republic is situated in the far south of Siberia. Its capital city of Kyzyl is located near the geographic "center of Asia". The eastern part of the republic is forested and elevated, and the west is a drier lowland.
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