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city, north-central Uygur Autonomous Region of Xinjiang, northwestern China. It lies about 112 miles (180 km) southeast of the city of Urumqi (Urumchi), on the northern edge of the deep Turfan Depression between the Bogda Mountains (an eastern extension of the Tien Shan) to the north and Qoltag Mountain to the south. It has long been the centre of a fertile oasis and an important trade centre on the main northern branch of the Silk Road from Hami to Kashgar (Kashi), with an alternative northern route, via Urumqi, running into the Junggar Basin, the Ili River valley, and Central Asia.