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In the mountains of Pakistan, 6,000 people live who look and sound very different from their neighbors. They claim to have lived in the area for thousands of years and they look European. Many of the Kalash are blond haired and blue eyed, an anomaly in Pakistan! Some believe that they are descendants of Alexander the Great’s army though their true ethnic origins are still unproven. DNA testing has not produced any connection to Greeks, yet it also showed no East or South Asian lineages either.

The Kalash are fascinating. Kalash people are a non-Muslim aboriginal minority living on the fringes of northern Pakistan, the only ones not following the religion in all of Pakistan. Their genetic makeup is so pure and distinct, that they are unlike other human races, thanks to their evolving DNA and rare alleles. Their isolation have helped them to preserve their culture. Even more interesting, most don't look Caucasian like this girl, but their gene pool creates great variation.

Kalash Girl - Northern Pakistan. The Kalash are fascinating. They don't share DNA markers with any other races/peoples, and they are so isolated they have managed to preserve their culture.

Pakistan's North-West Frontier Province with Afghanistan | Portrait of a Kalash girl. The Kalash are a tiny and dwindling community of non-muslims living in two valleys in the Hindu Kush mountains. Their culture and belief system differs drastically from the various ethnic groups surrounding them but is similar to that of the neighboring Nuristanis (Kafirs) in northeast Afghanistan | Image and caption © Sam Seyffert.

A beautiful Kalash green-eyed girl from Romboor, Kalash valleys, Chitral, Pakistan.

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Kalash girls, Afghanistan. Afghanistan forms part of south, central, and to some extent west Asia.