Yashkun in Pakistan

The Yashkun have only been reported in Pakistan
Main Language
Largest Religion
Progress Gauge
* Data can be from various sources including official census, agencies, and local research. Data from these sources can sometimes differ even by orders of magnitude. Joshua Project attempts to present a conservative, balanced estimate.

Introduction / History

The Yashkun are a small Muslim tribe who live in the high mountain valleys of north Pakistan. The original home of the Yashkuns is believed to be Central Asia. About the year 1000, the Buddhist and Hindu Yashkun became Sunni Muslims.

Where Are they Located?

The Yashkun tribe lives only in north Pakistan.

What Are Their Lives Like?

The Yashkun live much like their ancestors have for hundreds of years. Their chief occupation is that of raising sheep, cattle and goats. The Yashkuns migrate according to season. In the summer they take their animals to high mountain pastures. In the winter they live in lower elevations in huts along the banks of rivers. They obtain most of their food and clothing from their animals. In the short summers, they plant wheat, barley, corn, potatoes and vegetables to supplement their diet of meat and dairy products. They are suspicious of outsiders. Most Yashkun do not have access to modern medicine, electricity and indoor plumbing. Life expectancy is short in the cold, dry mountains of north Pakistan.

The Yashkun marry strictly within their group. Sons inherit their father's property with the eldest son becoming the head of the family. Families arrange marriages with the newly married couple living with or near the groom's parents.

The Yashkuns have often been victims of attacks from larger tribes like the Pashtuns. The larger groups would capture and enslave Yashkun women and children and steal Yashkun animals. Blood feuds are common among the peoples of north Pakistan.

Most Yashkun are unable to read and write. Yashkun children must often work to help support their families even if there are schools in the areas where they live. The main language of the Yashkun is Shina, a language spoken about half a million people in north Pakistan. Many Yashkun men also speak Pashtun. Only small Bible portions and some audio recordings are available in Shina. There are no known believers among the Yashkun.

What Are Their Beliefs?

The Yashkuns are entirely Sunni Muslim. The Yashkun mix their Islam with folk religion. The Yashkun try to obey the teachings of the Qur 'an and the prophet Muhammad. They believe that by following the Five Pillars of Islam that they will attain heaven when they die. Sunnis pray five times a day facing Mecca. They fast the month of Ramadan. The Yashkun try to attend mosque services on Friday if one is near. If a Muslim has the means, he or she will make a pilgrimage to Mecca once in his or her lifetime. Muslims are also prohibited to drink alcohol, eat pork, gamble, steal, use deceit, slander, and make idols.

The two main holidays for Sunni Muslims are Eid al Fitr, the breaking of the monthly fast and Eid al Adha, the celebration of Abraham's willingness to sacrifice his son to Allah.

What Are Their Needs?

The Yashkun have many needs including the needs of modern medicine and schools for their children. Most of all, the Yashkun need to hear and understand the life-changing message of Jesus Christ who alone can meet their deepest spiritual needs.

Prayer Points

Pray for gospel workers to catch a vision for reaching the Yashkun people of Pakistan.
Pray for Jesus movements to bless extended Yashkun families so the gospel will spread rapidly among this people group.
Pray for the spiritual lives of the Muslim Yashkun people to become fruitful as they follow Christ.
Pray for the lives and culture of the Yashkun people to evidence the rule and reign of the Kingdom of God as they open to the gospel, and for the beauty of Jesus to be seen in them.

Scripture Prayers for the Yashkun in Pakistan.



Profile Source:   Keith Carey  

People Name General Yashkun
People Name in Country Yashkun
Alternate Names यश्कुन
Population this Country 2,000
Population all Countries 2,000
Total Countries 1
Indigenous Yes
Progress Scale 1
Unreached Yes
Frontier People Group Yes
Pioneer Workers Needed 1
People ID 20278
ROP3 Code 115222
ROP25 Code 309203
ROP25 Name Yashkun
Country Pakistan
Region Asia, South
Continent Asia
10/40 Window Yes
National Bible Society Website
Persecution Rank 7  (Open Doors top 50 rank, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
Country Pakistan
Region Asia, South
Continent Asia
10/40 Window Yes
National Bible Society Website
Persecution Rank 7  (Open Doors top 50 rank, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
Total States 1
  Gilgit-Baltistan 2,000
Website South Asia Peoples
Primary Religion: Islam
Major Religion Percent *
0.00 %
Christianity  (Evangelical 0.00 %)
0.00 %
Ethnic Religions
0.00 %
0.00 %
100.00 %
0.00 %
Other / Small
0.00 %
0.00 %
* From latest Pakistan census data.
Current Christian values may substantially differ.
Primary Language Balti (1,400 speakers)
Language Code bft   Ethnologue Listing
Language Written Yes   ScriptSource Listing
Total Languages 2
Secondary Languages
Primary Language Balti (1,400 speakers)
Language Code bft   Ethnologue Listing
Total Languages 2
Secondary Languages
  Shina 600
People Groups Speaking Balti

Primary Language:  Balti

Bible Translation Status  (Years)
Bible-Portions Yes  (1903-1981)
Bible-New Testament No
Bible-Complete No
FCBH NT (www.bible.is) Online
Possible Print Bibles
World Bibles
Forum Bible Agencies
National Bible Societies
World Bible Finder
Virtual Storehouse
Resource Type Resource Name Source
Audio Recordings Audio Bible teaching Global Recordings Network
Audio Recordings Story of Jesus audio Jesus Film Project
Film / Video Jesus Film: view in Balti Jesus Film Project
Film / Video The Hope Video Mars Hill Media
Film / Video World Christian Videos World Christian Videos
General Faith Comes By Hearing - Bible in text or audio or video Faith Comes by Hearing
General Gospel website in this language General / Other
General Scripture Earth Gospel resources links Scripture Earth
Photo Source Copyrighted © 2024  International Mission Board-SBC - Hayden Bock  All rights reserved.  Used with permission
Map Source People Group data: Omid. Map geography: UNESCO / GMI. Map Design: Joshua Project  
Profile Source Keith Carey 
Data Sources Data is compiled from various sources. Learn more.

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