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DUSHANBE, February 6 (Itar-Tass) —— Perhaps, only schoolchildren are glad that the Siberian 20-degree frosts came to Tajikistan. The republic's Ministry of Education declared a week-long holiday beginning this Monday due to unusual snowfalls and cold weather, a ministry official told Itar-Tass.
The decision was taken because it is impossible to warm school rooms with available devices – small stoves, and the republic has no central heating system for all the post-Soviet period, the ministry's press centre explained.
According to Tajik meteorologists, the temperature dropped lower than 20 degrees Celcius below zero in Tajik valleys overnight, and the mountainous regions are hit by 30-degree frosts. The cold will remain in the republic for a few days, and then snowstorms with a little higher temperature are expected to come.
Most of the Tajik population has a hard time at present. The central heating system is in fact destroyed. Gas imported from Uzbekistan is sufficient only for export facilities operation, such as an aluminium producing plant. Except for Dushanbe, everywhere else in the republic electricity is supplied for no more than five hours a day.