Qinghai (青海; formerly romanised as Tsinghai or Kokonur), is a province of the People's Republic of China located in the northwest of the country. As one of the largest province-level administrative divisions of China by area, the province is ranked fourth-largest in area, and has the third-smallest population.
Located mostly on the Tibetan Plateau, the province has long been a melting pot for a number of ethnic groups including the Han, Tibetans, Hui, Tu, Mongols, and Salars. Qinghai borders Gansu on the northeast, Xinjiang on the northwest, Sichuan on the southeast, and the Tibet Autonomous Region on the southwest. Qinghai province was established in 1928 under the Republic of China period during which it was ruled by Chinese Muslim warlords known as the Ma clique. The Chinese name, "Qinghai" is named after Qinghai Lake (cyan sea lake), the largest lake in China. The province was known formerly as Kokonur in English, derived from the Oirat name for Qinghai Lake.
|• Chinese||青海省 (Qīnghǎi Shěng)|
Map showing the location of Qinghai Province
|Named for||Derived from the name of Qinghai Lake ("blue/green lake").|
(and largest city)
|Divisions||8 prefectures, 43 counties, 429 townships|
|• Secretary||Wang Jianjun|
|• Governor||Liu Ning|
|• Total||720,000 km2 (280,000 sq mi)|
|Highest elevation||6,860 m (22,510 ft)|
|• Density||7.8/km2 (20/sq mi)|
|• Density rank||30th|
|• Ethnic composition||Han - 54%|
Tibetan - 21%
Hui - 16%
Tu - 4%
Mongol - 1.8%
Salar - 1.8%
|• Languages and dialects||Zhongyuan Mandarin-Chinese, Amdo Tibetan, Monguor, Oirat Mongolian, Salar, and Western Yugur|
|ISO 3166 code||CN-QH|
|GDP (2017 )||CNY 264.28 billion|
USD 39.14 billion (30th)
|• per capita||CNY 44,348 |
USD 6,568 (23rd)
|HDI (2010)||0.638 (medium) (27th)|
"Qinghai" in Chinese characters
|Literal meaning||"Qinghai (Lake)"|
During China's Bronze Age, Qinghai was home to the Qiang people who traditionally made a living in agriculture and husbandry, the Kayue culture. The eastern part of the area of Qinghai was under the control of the Han dynasty about 2000 years ago. It was a battleground during the Tang and subsequent Chinese dynasties when they fought against successive Tibetan tribes.
In the middle of 3rd century CE, nomadic people related to the Mongolic Xianbei migrated to pasture lands around the Qinghai Lake (Koko Nur) and established the Tuyuhun Kingdom. In the 7th century, Tuyuhun Kingdom was attacked by both the Tibetan Empire and Tang dynasty as both of them sought control over trade routes. Military conflicts severely weakened the kingdom and it was incorporated into the Tibetan Empire. After the disintegration of the Tibetan Empire, small local factions emerged, some under the titular authority of China. The Song dynasty defeated the Tibetan Kokonor Kingdom in the 1070s. During the Yuan dynasty's administrative rule of Tibet, the region comprising the headwaters of the Yellow and Yangtze rivers - what modern Tibetan nationalists call "Amdo" - was apportioned to different administrative divisions than Tibet proper.
Most of Qinghai was once also a short time under the control of early Ming dynasty, but later gradually lost to the Khoshut Khanate founded by the Oirats. The Xunhua Salar Autonomous County is where most Salar people live in Qinghai. The Salars migrated to Qinghai from Samarkand in 1370. The chief of the four upper clans around this time was Han Pao-yuan and Ming granted him office of centurion, it was at this time the people of his four clans took Han as their surname. The other chief Han Shan-pa of the four lower Salar clans got the same office from Ming, and his clans were the ones who took Ma as their surname.
From 1640 to 1724, a big part of the area that is now Qinghai was under Khoshut Mongol control, but in that year it was conquered by the armies of the Qing dynasty. It was during the 1720s when Xining Prefecture was established and its borders were roughly those of modern Qinghai province. Xining, the capital of modern Qinghai province was built in this period as the administrative center. During the rule of the Qing dynasty, the governor was a viceroy of the Qing Emperor, but the local ethnic groups enjoyed much autonomy. Many chiefs retained their traditional authority, participating in local administrations. The Dungan revolt (1862–77) devastated the Hui Muslim population of Shaanxi, shifting the Hui center of population to Gansu and Qinghai.:405 Another Dungan revolt broke out in Qinghai in 1895 when various Muslim ethnic groups in Qinghai and Gansu rebelled against the Qing. Following the overthrow of the Qing dynasty in 1911, the region came under Chinese Muslim warlord Ma Qi control until the Northern Expedition by the Republic of China consolidated central control in 1928.
In July–August 1912, General Ma Fuxiang was "Acting Chief Executive Officer of Kokonur" (de facto Governor of the region that later became Qinghai). In 1928, Qinghai province was created. Previously, it was part of Gansu, as the "Tibetan frontier district". The Muslim warlord and General Ma Qi became military governor of Qinghai, followed by his brother Ma Lin (warlord) and then Ma Qi's son Ma Bufang. In 1932 Tibet invaded Qinghai, attempting to capture southern parts of Qinghai province, following contention in Yushu, Qinghai over a monastery in 1932. The army of Ma Bufang's defeated the Tibetan armies. Governor of Qinghai, Ma Bufang was described as a socialist by American journalist John Roderick and friendly compared to the other Ma Clique warlords. Ma Bufang was reported to be good humoured and jovial in contrast to the brutal reign of Ma Hongkui. Most of eastern China was ravaged by the Second Sino-Japanese War and the Chinese Civil War, by contrast, Qinghai was relatively untouched.
Ma Bufang increased the prominence of the Hui and Salar people in Qinghai's politics by heavily recruiting to his army from the counties in which those ethnic groups predominated. General Ma started a state run and controlled industrialization project, directly creating educational, medical, agricultural, and sanitation projects, run or assisted by the state. The state provided money for food and uniforms in all schools, state run or private. Roads and a theater were constructed. The state controlled all the press, no freedom was allowed for independent journalists.
As the 1949 Chinese revolution approached Qinghai, Ma Bufang abandoned his post and flew to Hong Kong, traveling abroad but never returning to China. On January 1, 1950, the Qinghai Province People's Government was declared, owing its allegiance to the new People's Republic of China. Aside from some minor adjustments to suit the geography, the PRC maintained the province's territorial integrity. Resistance to Communist rule continued in the form of the Huis' Kuomintang Islamic insurgency (1950-58), spreading past traditionally Hui areas to the ethnic-Tibetan south.:408 Although the Hui comprised 15.6% of Qinghai's population in 1949, making the province the second-largest concentration of Hui after Ningxia, the state denied the Hui ethnic autonomous townships and counties that their numbers warranted under Chinese law until the 1980s.:411
Qinghai is located on the northeastern part of the Tibetan Plateau. The Yellow River originates in the southern part of the province, while the Yangtze and Mekong have their sources in the southwestern part. Qinghai is separated by the Riyue Mountain into pastoral and agricultural zones in the west and east.
The average elevation of Qinghai is over 3,000 metres (9,800 ft) above sea level. Mountain ranges include the Tanggula Mountains and Kunlun Mountains, with the highest point being Bukadaban Feng at 6,860 metres (22,510 ft). Due to the high altitude, Qinghai has quite cold winters (harsh in the highest elevations), mild summers, and a large diurnal temperature variation. Its mean annual temperature is approximately −5 to 8 °C (23 to 46 °F), with January temperatures ranging from −18 to −7 °C (0 to 19 °F) and July temperatures ranging from 15 to 21 °C (59 to 70 °F). It is also prone to heavy winds as well as sandstorms from February to April. Significant rainfall occurs mainly in summer, while precipitation is very low in winter and spring, and is generally low enough to keep much of the province semi-arid or arid.
By area, Qinghai is the largest province in the People's Republic of China (excluding the autonomous regions). Qinghai Lake is the largest salt water lake in China, and the second largest in the world. The Qaidam basin lies in the northwest part of the province. About a third of this resource rich basin is desert. The basin has an altitude between 3000 and 3500 meters.
The Sanjiangyuan National Nature Reserve, is located in Qinghai and contains the headwaters of the Yellow River, Yangtze River, and Mekong River. The reserve was established to protect the headwaters of these three rivers and consists of 18 subareas, each containing three zones which are managed with differing degrees of strictness.
|Order||Name||Chinese Name||Governance period|
|Order||Name||Chinese Name||Governance period|
Because the Han form Qinghai's ethnic majority, and because none of its many ethnic minorities have clear dominance over the rest, the province is not administered as an autonomous region. Instead, the province has many ethnic autonomous areas at the district and county levels. Qinghai is administratively divided into eight prefecture-level divisions: two prefecture-level cities and six autonomous prefectures:
|Administrative divisions of Qinghai|
|№||Division code||Division||Area in km2||Population 2010||Seat||Divisions|
|Districts||Counties||Aut. counties||CL cities|
|630000||Qinghai Province||720000.00||5,626,723||Xining city||6||27||7||4|
|3||630100||Xining city||7424.11||2,208,708||Chengzhong District||4||2||1|
|4||630200||Haidong city||13043.99||1,396,845||Ledu District||2||4|
|2||632200||Haibei Autonomous Prefecture||33349.99||273,304||Haiyan County||3||1|
|6||632300||Huangnan Autonomous Prefecture||17908.89||256,716||Tongren County||3||1|
|5||632500||Hainan Autonomous Prefecture||43377.11||441,691||Gonghe County||5|
|8||632600||Golog Autonomous Prefecture||76442.38||181,682||Maqên County||6|
|7||632700||Yushu Autonomous Prefecture||197953.70||378,439||Yushu city||5||1|
|1||632800||Haixi Autonomous Prefecture||300854.48||489,338||Delingha city||3||3|
|Administrative divisions in Chinese and varieties of romanizations|
|Qinghai Province||青海省||Qīnghǎi Shěng|
|Xining city||西宁市||Xīníng Shì|
|Haidong city||海东市||Hǎidōng Shì|
|Haibei Autonomous Prefecture||海北自治州||Hǎiběi Zìzhìzhōu|
|Huangnan Autonomous Prefecture||黄南自治州||Huángnán Zìzhìzhōu|
|Hainan Autonomous Prefecture||海南自治州||Hǎinán Zìzhìzhōu|
|Golog Autonomous Prefecture||果洛自治州||Guǒluò Zìzhìzhōu|
|Yushu Autonomous Prefecture||玉树自治州||Yùshù Zìzhìzhōu|
|Haixi Autonomous Prefecture||海西自治州||Hǎixī Zìzhìzhōu|
|Population by urban areas of prefecture & county cities|
|#||City||Urban area||District area||City proper||Census date|
|2||Golmud||156,779||186,341||part of Haixi Prefecture||2010-11-01|
|(4)||Yushu[b]||56,802||120,447||part of Yushu Prefecture||2010-11-01|
|5||Delingha||54,844||78,184||part of Haixi Prefecture||2010-11-01|
|(6)||Mangnai[c]||33,440||33,451||part of Haixi Prefecture||2010-11-01|
There are over 37 recognized ethnic groups among Qinghai's population of 5.2 million, with national minorities making up 46.5% of the population. The demographic mix is similar to Gansu province, with Han (54.5%), Tibetan (20.7%), Hui (16%), Tu (Monguor) (4%), Mongol, and Salar being the most populous groups. Han Chinese predominate in the cities of Xining, Haidong, Delingha and Golmud, and elsewhere in the northeast. The Hui are concentrated in Xining, Haidong, Minhe County, Hualong County, and Datong County. The Tu people predominate in Huzhu County and the Salars in Xunhua County; Tibetans and Mongols are sparsely distributed across the rural western part of the province.
Of the Muslim ethnic groups in China, Qinghai has communities of Hui, Salar, Dongxiang, and Bao'an. The Hui dominate the wholesale business in Qinghai. Both the indigenous Han and Tibetan people in Qinghai differ from their co-ethnics outside of the province; the Han in Qinghai are more devoutly Buddhist and influenced by Tibetan customs, while the Tibetans may not speak Tibetan and are more integrated into mainstream Chinese culture. Qinghai Tibetans regard themselves as distinct from Tibetans in the Tibet Autonomous Region, and celebrate their region's unbroken independence from Lhasa's control since the fall of the Tubo Empire.
The predominant religions in Qinghai are Chinese folk religions (including Taoist traditions and Confucianism) and Chinese Buddhism among the Han-Chinese. The large Tibetan population practices Tibetan schools of Buddhism or traditional Tibetan Bön religion, while the Hui-Chinese practice Islam. Christianity is the religion of 0.76% of the province's population according to the Chinese General Social Survey of 2004. According to a survey of 2010, 17.51% of the population of Qinghai follow Islam.
From September 1848, the city was the seat of a short-lived Latin Catholic Apostolic Vicariate (pre-diocesan missionary jurisdiction) of Kokonur (alias Khouhkou-noor, Kokonoor), but it was suppressed in 1861. No incumbent(s) recorded.
Qinghai has been influenced by the interactions "between Mongol and Tibetan culture, north to south, and Han Chinese and Inner Asia Muslim culture, east to west". The languages of Qinghai have for centuries formed a Sprachbund, with Zhongyuan Mandarin, Amdo Tibetan, Salar, Yugur, and Monguor borrowing from and influencing one another. In mainstream Chinese culture, Qinghai is most associated with the Tale of King Mu, Son of Heaven. According to this legend, King Mu of Zhou (r. 976–922 BCE) pursued hostile Quanrong nomads to eastern Qinghai, where the goddess Xi Wangmu threw the king a banquet in the Kunlun Mountains.
The main religions in Qinghai are Tibetan Buddhism and Islam. The Dongguan Mosque has been continuously operating since 1380.:402 Measures of education in Qinghai are low, particularly among the Muslim ethnic groups such as the Hui and Salar, who sometimes prefer to send their children to madrasahs rather than secular schools. The yak, which is native to Qinghai, is widely used in the province for transportation and its meat. The Mongols of Qinghai celebrate the Naadam festival on the Qaidam Basin every year.
Qinghai's economy is amongst the smallest in all of China. Its nominal GDP for 2011 was just 163.4 billion RMB (US$25.9 billion) and contributes to about 0.35% of the entire country's economy. Per capita GDP was 19,407 RMB (US$2,841), the second lowest in China.
Its heavy industry includes iron and steel production, located near its capital city of Xining. Oil and natural gas from the Qaidam Basin have also been an important contributor to the economy. Salt works operate at many of the province's numerous salt lakes.
Outside of the provincial capital, Xining, most of Qinghai remains underdeveloped. Qinghai ranks second lowest in China in terms of highway length, and will require a significant expansion of its infrastructure to capitalize on the economic potential of its rich natural resources.
Xining Economic & Technological Development Zone (XETDZ) was approved as state-level development zone in July 2000. It has a planned area of 4.4 square kilometres (1.7 sq mi). XETDZ lies in the east of Xining, 5 kilometres (3.1 mi) from downtown. In the east of the province, Xining stands at the upper reaches of the Huangshui River—one of the Yellow River's branches. The city is surrounded by the mountains with an average elevation of 2261 meters and the highest at 4393 meters. XETDZ is the first of its kind at the national level on the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau. It is established to fulfill the nation's strategy of developing the west.
XETDZ enjoys a convenient transportation system, connected by the Xining-Lanzhou expressway and running through by two main roads, the broadest in the city. It is 4 kilometers from the railway station, 15 kilometers from Xi'ning Airport — a grade 4D airport with 14 airlines to cities such as Beijing, Guangzhou, Shanghai, Chengdu and Xi'an. Xining is Qinghai province's passage to the outside world, a transportation center with more than ten highways, over 100 roads and two railways, Lanzhou-Qinghai and Qinghai-Tibet Railways in and out of the city.
It focuses on the development of following industries: chemicals based on salt lake resources, nonferrous metals, and petroleum and natural gas processing; special medicine, foods and bio-chemicals using local plateau animals and plants; new products involving ecological and environmental protection, high technology, new materials as well as information technology; and services such as logistics, banking, real estate, tourism, hotel, catering, agency and international trade.
Many tourist attractions center on Xining, the provincial seat of Qinghai.
During the hot summer months, many tourists from the hot Southern and Eastern parts of China travel to Xining, as the climate of Xining in July and August is quite mild and comfortable, making the city an ideal summer retreat.
Qinghai Lake (青海湖, qīnghǎi hú) is another tourist attraction, albeit further from Xining than Kumbum Monastery (Ta'er Si). The lake is the largest saltwater lake in China, and is also located on the "Roof of the World", the Tibetan Plateau. The lake itself lies at 3,600m elevation. The surrounding area is made up of rolling grasslands and populated by ethnic Tibetans. Most pre-arranged tours stop at Bird Island (鸟岛, niǎo dǎo). An international bicycle race takes place annually from Xining to Qinghai Lake.
The Lanqing Railway, running between Lanzhou, Gansu and Xining, the province's capital, was completed in 1959 and is the major transportation route in and out of the province. A continuation of the line, the Qinghai-Tibet Railway via Golmud and western Qinghai, has become one of the most ambitious projects in PRC history. It was completed in October 2005 and now links Tibet with the rest of China through Qinghai.
Construction on the Golmud–Dunhuang Railway, in the province's northwestern part, started in 2012.
Six National Highways run through the province.
Xining Caojiabu Airport provides service to Beijing, Lanzhou, Golmud and Delingha. Smaller regional airports, Delingha Airport, Golog Maqin Airport, Huatugou Airport, Qilian Airport and Yushu Batang Airport, serve some of the local centers of the far-flung province; plans exist for the construction of three more by 2020.
Since the Ministry of Information Industry began its "Access to Telephones Project", Qinghai has invested 640 million yuan to provide telephone access to 3860 out its 4133 administrative villages. At the end of 2006, 299 towns had received Internet access. However, 6.6 percent of villages in the region still have no access to the telephone. These villages are mainly scattered in Qingnan Area, with 90 percent of them located in Yushu and Guoluo. The average altitude of these areas exceeds 3600 meters, and the poor natural conditions hamper the establishment of telecommunication facilities in the region.
Satellite phones have been provided to 186 remote villages in Qinghai Province as of September 14, 2007. The areas benefited were Yushu Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture and Guoluo Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture. Qinghai has recently been provided with satellite telephone access. In June 2007, China Satcom carried out an in-depth survey in Yushu and Guoluo, and made a special satellite phones for these areas. Two phones were provided to each village for free, and calls were charged at the rate of 0.2 yuan per minute for both local and national calls, with the extra charges assumed by China Satcom. No monthly rent was charged on the satellite phone. International calls were also available.
It is often assumed that this current policy [of not politically uniting all ethnically Tibetan areas] reflects the PRC leadership's intention to divide and rule Tibet, but this assumption is not wholly accurate…. The PRC cemented the [historical] status quo by keeping Amdo/Qinghai as a separate, multinational province… China does not reverse perceived territorial acquisitions. Hence, all territories that escaped the domination of Lhasa in recent history remained attached to the neighboring Chinese constituencies they tended to be under the influence of.
The Amdolese language (Tibetan: ཨ་མདོ་སྐད་, Wylie: A-mdo skad, Lhasa dialect IPA: [ámtokɛ́ʔ]; also called Am kä) is the Tibetic language spoken by the majority of Amdolese, mainly in Qinghai and some parts of Sichuan (Ngawa Tibetan and Qiang Autonomous Prefecture) and Gansu (Gannan Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture).
Amdolese is one of the four main spoken Tibetic languages, the other three being Central Tibetan, Khams Tibetan, and Ladakhi. These four related languages share a common written script but their spoken pronunciations, vocabularies and grammars are different. These differences may have emerged due to geographical isolation of the regions of Tibet. Unlike Khams and Standard Tibetan, Amdolese language is not a tonal language. It retains many word-initial consonant clusters that have been lost in Central Tibetan.Bonan people
The Bonan people (保安族; pinyin: Bǎo'ān zú; native [bɵːŋɑn]) are an ethnic group living in Gansu and Qinghai provinces in northwestern China. They are one of the "titular nationalities" of Gansu's Jishishan Bonan, Dongxiang and Salar Autonomous County, which is located south of the Yellow River, near Gansu's border with Qinghai.
Numbering approximately 17,000 the Bonan are the 7th smallest of the 56 ethnic groups officially recognized by the People's Republic of China.China National Highway 109
China National Highway 109 connects Beijing with Lhasa. It runs westwards of Beijing via Datong, Yinchuan and Xining to Golmud before turning southwest to Lhasa. The portion of the highway from Xining to Lhasa is known as the Qinghai-Tibet Highway. The total distance of the highway is 3,901 km.
In Beijing it is known as Fushi Road or Jinglan Road, as it begins from Fuchengmen and traverses through Shijingshan.
The majority of the Beijing section is in Mentougou District.
The section of the highway within western Qinghai and Tibet, from Golmud to Lhasa, is paralleled by the Qinghai-Tibet Railway.,
"Tasked with carrying upwards of 85 per cent of goods in and out of Tibet, the Qinghai-Tibet Highway has been dubbed the "Lifeline of Tibet." ... Since it was opened to traffic in 1954, the central government has spent nearly 3 billion yuan (US$362 million) on three major overhauls. It was asphalted in 1985."Delingha Airport
Delingha Airport (IATA: HXD, ICAO: ZLDL) is an airport serving Delingha City, the capital of the Haixi Mongol and Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture in Qinghai Province, China. The airport is located 29 kilometres (18 mi) southwest of the city center, on the south bank of Bayin River.Construction began on 27 May 2011, with a total investment of 630 million yuan. The airport was opened on 16 June 2014, with the inaugural flight China Eastern Airlines MU2241 from Xining Caojiabao Airport. Delingha is the fourth civil airport in Qinghai.Golmud
Golmud (Chinese: 格尔木; pinyin: Gé'ěrmù; Tibetan: ན་གོར་མོ།, Wylie: Na-gor-mo), also transliterated as Ge'ermu, Geermu or Nagormo, is a county-level city in Qinghai Province, China, bordering Xinjiang to the northwest and the Tibet Autonomous Region to the southwest. Administrated by Haixi Mongol and Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture, it is the second largest city in Qinghai and the third largest in the Tibetan Plateau (after Xining and Lhasa). The population is now about 205,700. The name of the city derives from Mongolian, and its literal meaning in the local Western Mongolian is "Rivers".Haidong
Haidong (simplified Chinese: 海东; traditional Chinese: 海東; pinyin: Hǎidōng; Wylie: Haitung) is a prefecture-level city of Qinghai province in Western China. Its name literally means "east of the (Qinghai) Lake." On 8 February 2013 Haidong was upgraded from a prefecture (海东地区) into a prefecture-level city. Haidong is the second largest city in Qinghai after Xining.Independent Division of Qinghai Provincial Military District (2nd Formation)(People's Republic of China)
Independent Division of Xinjiang Military District (Chinese: 新疆军区独立师)(1st Formation) was formed in July 1966 from the Public Security Contingent of Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region. The division was composed of three regiments (1st to 3rd).
On February 25, 1969, the division exchanged its designation and position with Independent Division of Qinghai Provincial Military District with all its remaining 3 regiments, and became the second formation of Independent Division of Qinghai Military District (Chinese: 青海省军区独立师). All its regiments were renamed as follows:
1st Regiment (former 2nd);
3rd Regiment (former 3rd);
7th Regiment (former 1st).As of October 26, 1970 the division was composed of 7 regiments.
In May 1976 the division was disbanded.Kumbum Monastery
Kumbum Monastery (Wylie: སྐུ་འབུམ་བྱམས་པ་གླིང་, THL Kumbum Jampa Ling), also called Ta'er Temple, is a Tibetan gompa in Huangzhong County, Xining, Qinghai, China. It was founded in 1583 in a narrow valley close to the village of Lusar in the historical Tibetan region of Amdo. Its superior monastery is Drepung Monastery, immediately to the west of Lhasa. It is ranked in importance as second only to Lhasa.Kunlun Mountains
The Kunlun Mountains (simplified Chinese: 昆仑山; traditional Chinese: 崑崙山; pinyin: Kūnlún Shān, pronounced [kʰu̯ə́nlu̯ə̌n ʂán]; Mongolian: Хөндлөн Уулс, Khöndlön Uuls; Uyghur: كۇئېنلۇن تاغ تىزمىسى) are one of the longest mountain chains in Asia, extending more than 3,000 kilometres (1,900 mi). In the broadest sense, the chain forms the northern edge of the Tibetan Plateau south of the Tarim Basin.
The exact definition of this range varies. An old source uses Kunlun to mean the mountain belt that runs across the center of China, that is, Kunlun in the narrow sense: Altyn Tagh along with the Qilian and Qin Mountains. A recent source has the Kunlun range forming most of the south side of the Tarim Basin and then continuing east south of the Altyn Tagh. Sima Qian (Shiji, scroll 123) says that Emperor Wu of Han sent men to find the source of the Yellow River and gave the name Kunlun to the mountains at its source. The name seems to have originated as a semi-mythical location in the classical Chinese text Shanhai Jing.Qinghai Lake
Qinghai Lake (Chinese: 青海湖), Koko Nor (Mongolian: Хөх нуур) or Tso Ngonpo (Tibetan: མཚོ་སྔོན་པོ།) is the largest lake in China. Located in Qinghai province on an endorheic basin, Qinghai Lake is classified as a saline and alkaline lake. Qinghai Lake has a surface area of 4,317 square kilometres (1,667 sq mi); an average depth of 21 metres (69 ft), and a maximum depth of 25.5 m (84 ft) as measured in 2008. The current Chinese name "Qinghai," the older Mongolian name "Kokonor", and the Tibetan name translate to "Green Sea", "Blue Lake" and "Teal Sea", respectively. Qinghai Lake is located about 100 kilometres (62 mi) west of the provincial capital of Xining (Tib:Ziling ཟི་ལིང་།) at 3,205 m (10,515 ft) above sea level in a hollow of the Tibetan plateau. Twenty-three rivers and streams empty into Qinghai Lake, most of them seasonal. Five permanent streams provide 80% of total influx.The lake has fluctuated in size, shrinking over much of the 20th century, but has increased since 2004. There are five native fish species: The edible naked carp (Gymnocypris przewalskii, huángyú; 湟鱼), which is the most abundant in the lake, and four stoneloaches (Triplophysa stolickai, T. dorsonotata, T. scleroptera and T. siluroides). Other Yellow River fish species occurred in the lake, but they disappeared with the increasing salinity and basicity, beginning in the early Holocene, and eventually reaching the current salinity of c. 14 parts per thousand and pH of 9.3. Qinghai Lake became isolated from the Yellow River about 150,000 years ago.Qinghai–Tibet War
The Qinghai–Tibet War was a conflict that took place during the Sino-Tibetan War. A rebellion led by the Dalai Lama with British support wanted to expand the original conflict taking place between the Tibetan Army and Liu Wenhui (Sichuan clique) in Xikang, to attack Qinghai, a region northeast of Tibet. Using a dispute over a monastery in Yushu in Qinghai as an excuse in 1932, the Tibetan army attacked. Qinghai Muslim Gen. Ma Bufang overran the Tibetan armies and recaptured several counties in Xikang province. Shiqu, Dege and other counties were seized from the Tibetans. The war against the Tibetan army was led by the Muslim General Ma Biao. The Tibetans were pushed back to the other side of the Jinsha river. The Qinghai army recaptured counties that had been controlled by the Tibetan army since 1919. The victory on the part of the Qinghai army threatened the supply lines to Tibetan forces in Garze and Xinlong. As a result, this part of the Tibetan army was forced to withdraw. Ma and Liu warned Tibetan officials not to dare cross the Jinsha river again. By August the Tibetans lost so much territory to Liu Wenhui and Ma Bufang's forces that the Dalai Lama telegraphed the British government of India for assistance. British pressure led China to declare a cease-fire. Separate truces were signed by Ma and Liu with the Tibetans in 1933, ending the fighting. The British had backed up the Tibetans during the war. After their war the victory over the Tibetans was celebrated by Xikang and Qinghai soldiers.Qinghai–Tibet railway
The Qinghai–Tibet railway or Qingzang railway (Standard Tibetan: མཚོ་བོད་ལྕགས་ལམ།, mtsho bod lcags lam; simplified Chinese: 青藏铁路; traditional Chinese: 青藏鐵路; pinyin: Qīngzàng Tiělù), is a high-elevation railway that connects Xining, Qinghai Province, to Lhasa, Tibet Autonomous Region of China.
The length of the railway is 1,956 km (1,215 mi). Construction of the 815 km (506 mi) section between Xining and Golmud was completed by 1984. The 1,142 km (710 mi) section between Golmud and Lhasa was inaugurated on 1 July 2006, by CPC General Secretary Hu Jintao: the first two-passenger trains were "Qing 1" (Q1) from Golmud to Lhasa, and "Zang 2" (J2) from Lhasa to Beijing. This railway is the first that connects the Tibet Autonomous Region to any other provinces. Tibet, due to its elevation and terrain, is the last provincial level region in China to have a railway. Testing of the line and equipment started on 1 May 2006. Passenger trains run from Beijing, Chengdu, Chongqing, Guangzhou, Shanghai, Xining, and Lanzhou and can carry between 800 and 1,000 passengers during peak season.The line includes the Tanggula Pass, which, at 5,072 m (16,640 feet) above sea level, is the world's highest point on a railway. Tanggula railway station at 5,068 m (16,627 feet) 33°00′18.50″N 91°38′57.70″E is the world's highest railway station. The 1,338 m (4,390 ft) Fenghuoshan tunnel is the highest rail tunnel in the world at 4,905 m (16,093 ft) above sea level. The 4,010 m (13,160 ft) New Guanjiao Tunnel is the longest tunnel and the culminating point 3,700 metres (12,100 ft) between Xining and Golmud and 3,345 m (10,974 ft). Yangbajing tunnel is the longest tunnel between Golmud and Lhasa. More than 960 km (600 mi), over 80% of the Golmud–Lhasa section, is at an elevation of more than 4,000 m (13,123 ft). There are 675 bridges, totalling 159.88 km (99.34 mi); about 550 km (340 mi) of track is laid on permafrost.Sino-Tibetan War
The Sino-Tibetan War was a war that began in 1930 when the Tibetan Army under the 13th Dalai Lama invaded Xikang and Yushu in Qinghai in a dispute over monasteries. Ma clique warlord Ma Bufang secretly sent a telegram to Sichuan warlord Liu Wenhui and the leader of the Republic of China, Chiang Kai-shek, suggesting a joint attack on the Tibetan forces. Their armies rapidly overwhelmed and defeated the Tibetan Army.Tibetan Plateau
The Tibetan Plateau (Tibetan: བོད་ས་མཐོ།, Wylie: bod sa mtho), also known in China as the Qinghai–Tibet Plateau or the Qing–Zang Plateau (Chinese: 青藏高原; pinyin: Qīng–Zàng Gāoyuán) or Himalayan Plateau, is a vast elevated plateau in Central Asia and East Asia, covering most of the Tibet Autonomous Region and Qinghai in western China, as well as Ladakh (Jammu and Kashmir) and Lahaul & Spiti (Himachal Pradesh) in India. It stretches approximately 1,000 kilometres (620 mi) north to south and 2,500 kilometres (1,600 mi) east to west. With an average elevation exceeding 4,500 metres (14,800 ft), the Tibetan Plateau is sometimes called "the Roof of the World" because it stands over 3 miles (4.8 km) above sea level and is surrounded by imposing mountain ranges that harbor the world's two highest summits, Mount Everest and K2, and is the world's highest and largest plateau, with an area of 2,500,000 square kilometres (970,000 sq mi) (about five times the size of Metropolitan France). Sometimes termed the Third Pole, the Tibetan Plateau contains the headwaters of the drainage basins of most of the streams in surrounding regions. Its tens of thousands of glaciers and other geographical and ecological features serve as a "water tower" storing water and maintaining flow. The impact of global warming on the Tibetan Plateau is of intense scientific interest.Xining
Xining (Chinese: 西宁 Xīníng [ɕí.nǐŋ]; Standard Tibetan: ཟི་ལིང་། Ziling) is the capital of Qinghai province in western China, and the largest city on the Tibetan Plateau. It has 2,208,708 inhabitants at the 2010 census whom 1,198,304 live in the built up area made of 4 urban districts.The city was a commercial hub along the Northern Silk Road's Hexi Corridor for over 2000 years, and was a stronghold of the Han, Sui, Tang, and Song dynasties' resistance against nomadic attacks from the west. Although long a part of Gansu province, Xining was added to Qinghai in 1928. Xining holds sites of religious significance to Muslims and Buddhists, including the Dongguan Mosque and Ta'er Monastery. The city lies in the Huangshui River valley, and owing to its high altitude, has a cold semi-arid climate. It is connected by rail to Lhasa, Tibet and connected by high-speed rail to Lanzhou, Gansu and Ürümqi, Xinjiang.Xining railway station
Xining railway station (simplified Chinese: 西宁站; traditional Chinese: 西寧站; pinyin: Xīníng Zhàn) is the main railway station serving the city of Xining in Qinghai, China. It is the first station on the Qinghai–Tibet Railway which connects the city with Lhasa in Tibet.Yellow River
The Yellow River or Huang He (listen ) is the second longest river in Asia, after the Yangtze River, and the sixth longest river system in the world at the estimated length of 5,464 km (3,395 mi). Originating in the Bayan Har Mountains in Qinghai province of Western China, it flows through nine provinces, and it empties into the Bohai Sea near the city of Dongying in Shandong province. The Yellow River basin has an east–west extent of about 1,900 kilometers (1,180 mi) and a north–south extent of about 1,100 km (680 mi). Its total drainage area is about 752,546 square kilometers (290,560 sq mi).
Its basin was the birthplace of ancient Chinese civilization, and it was the most prosperous region in early Chinese history. There are frequent devastating floods and course changes produced by the continual elevation of the river bed, sometimes above the level of its surrounding farm fields.Yushu Batang Airport
The Yushu Batang Airport (Chinese: 玉树巴塘机场) (IATA: YUS, ICAO: ZLYS) is the airport serving Yushu City in Qinghai Province, China. It is located 18 kilometers to the south of the city center, Gyêgu, at the 3,890 meters elevation about the sea level, which makes it the highest civilian airport in Qinghai Province, and one of the highest in the world.
The construction of the airport started in 2007. The first aircraft landed at the new airport on May 29, 2009, and the airport was officially opened on August 1, 2009.Yushu Batang Airport has a 3,800 meter-long runway, and can receive A319 aircraft. The passenger terminal is designed to serve up to 80,000 passengers per year. According to the CAAC statistics, the airport served 7,484 passengers during 2009, the first (incomplete) year of its operation.The airport played an important role in the delivery of rescue personnel and relief supplies to the area affected by the 2010 Yushu earthquake. The facility was re-opened at noon on the day of the earthquake (Wednesday, April 14), and the first flight with personnel and supplies of the China International Earthquake Rescue Team landed there at 8 pm the same day.Zhao Leji
Zhao Leji (Chinese: 赵乐际; pinyin: Zhào Lèjì; born 8 March 1957) is a senior leader of the Communist Party of China and the Secretary of the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection, the party's top anti-corruption body. Additionally, he is a member of the Politburo Standing Committee, the party's top decision making body.
In his earlier political career, he served as the Communist Party Secretary of Qinghai, the party secretary of Shaanxi, and the head of the Organization Department of the Communist Party of China. He entered the Politburo in 2012, and was promoted to the Standing Committee five years later.