Kazak, Qinghai in China

Joshua Project has identified the Kazak, Qinghai only in China






Largest Religion

Main Language



Although the Qinghai Kazaks are part of the official Kazak nationality in China, they now consider themselves to be a distinct people group. Their language has also become different from other Kazaks in Xinjiang. The Qinghai Kazaks have a common affinity and kinship for each other because of the horrendous events of their history.


In 1936 a group of 10,000 Kazaks left northern Xinjiang and migrated south to Qinghai. "Beset there by Mongol nomads, the Kazaks moved further south in 1939, only to be caught and massacred by a local warlord. Of 10,000 Kazaks, they say all but 700 perished. Today they have recovered to become a commune of about 2,000 semi-nomads, who raise sheep, horses, cattle and camels and live in houses near Golmud in winter." The Kazaks have long desired to have their own independent state. In the 1940s a man named Osman led his fellow Kazaks in a rebellion. This rebellion gave them control of a large area of southwest Xinjiang. Several years later in 1951, Osman was captured and executed. In 1953, the Communists slaughtered 12,600 of the 15,000 Kazaks who attempted to flee China.


The Qinghai Kazaks are nomads who migrate seasonally in search of new pastures. Their yurts are designed to be quickly assembled and easily transported. Their livestock includes sheep, goats, and some cattle. One of their favorite drinks is called kumyss, a wine made from fermented mare's or horse's milk. When a young Kazak couple marries, the "brideprice" is often paid in horses.


Although they claim to be Muslims, the Qinghai Kazaks are essentially animists. They also engage in ancestor worship. They are surrounded by Tibetan Buddhists on every side but have stubbornly refused to embrace their religion. The Qinghai Kazaks still admit to being Muslims; but without the Qur'an, teachers, or a mosque to worship in, their devotion has gradually eroded.


Famous Scottish missionary George Hunter translated the first Scriptures for the Kazak in China. Books of the Bible were printed by the British and Foreign Bible Society in 1922. Today the Kazaks of Qinghai are a completely untouched group and have no knowledge whatsoever of Christ or the gospel.

Profile Source:   Operation China, Paul Hattaway  Copyrighted ©   Used with permission  

People Name General Kazak, Qinghai (Kar-zark, Ching-hai)
People Name in Country Kazak, Qinghai
Population in China 3,700
World Population 3,700
Countries 1
Progress Scale 1.1
Least-Reached Yes
Unengaged Yes (per Finishing the Task)
Indigenous Yes
Alternate Names Haixi Kazaks, Kazakh, Qinghai
Affinity Bloc Turkic Peoples
People Cluster Kazakh
People Name General Kazak, Qinghai (Kar-zark, Ching-hai)
Ethnic Code MSY41e
People ID 18517
Country China
Region Northeast Asia
Continent Asia
10/40 Window Yes
Persecution Rank 29  (Open Doors top 50 rank, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
Location in Country Approximately 2,900 members of an isolated Kazak people group live in the northwest section of Qinghai Province. Being seminomadic, they inhabit a wide stretch of land in the Haixi Autonomous Prefecture which is jointly administered by the Mongols, Tibetans, and Kazaks. They are the only group of Kazaks found in Qinghai (Blue Sea) Province..   Source:  Operation China, 2000
Languages & Dialects on file:  1  (up to 20 largest shown)
Kazakh (3,700)
Languages & Dialects (speakers if known) - up to 20 shown
Kazakh 3,700
For Primary Language: Kazakh

Bible Translation Status  (Years)
Bible Portions Yes   (1818-1989)
New Testament Yes   (1820-2011)
Complete Bible Yes   (1820-2010)
Audio Bible Online
Resource Format
Audio Bible teaching (GRN) Audio Recordings
Four Spiritual Laws General
God's Story Video Film / Video
Got Questions Ministry General
Jesus Film: view in Kazakh Film / Video
Magdalena (Jesus Film Project) Film / Video
My Last Day (Jesus Film Project Anime) Film / Video
Online New Testament (FCBH) Audio Recordings
Story of Jesus audio (Jesus Film Project) Audio Recordings
Story of Jesus for Children (JF Project) Film / Video
Primary Religion: Islam

Major Religion Percent
30.00 %
Christianity  (Evangelical 0.00 %)
0.00 %
Ethnic Religions
1.00 %
0.00 %
69.00 %
0.00 %
Other / Small
0.00 %
0.00 %

Christian Segments Percent
0.0 %
0.0 %
0.0 %
Other Christian
0.0 %
0.0 %
Roman Catholic
0.0 %
Photo Source: Abdulrakhim Aitbayev  
Map Source: Joshua Project / Global Mapping International  
Profile Source: Operation China, Paul Hattaway  Copyrighted ©   Used with permission  
Data Sources: Data is compiled from various sources. Read more

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