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A bakhsh (Persian: بخش, also romanized as baxš) is a third-level administrative division of Iran. While sometimes translated as "county," it is more accurately translated as "district," similar to a township in the United States or a district of England.

In Iran, the provinces (first-level divisions) (استان, ostān) consist of several counties (second-level divisions) (شهرستان, shahrestān), and the counties consist of one or more districts (third-level divisions) (بخش, bakhsh). A district consists of a combination of cities (شهر shahr) and rural districts (دهستان, dehestān) (fourth-level divisions). The official governor of a district is called a bakhshdar, the head of the bakhshdari office. Rural districts are a collection of villages and their surrounding lands. One of the cities of the county is named its capital.[1][2]

To better understand such subdivisions, the following table may be helpful. Below is the 2006 structure of Khash County, one of the 26 counties that constitute Sistan and Baluchestan province.

  • The Central District contained five rural districts and one city, the capital
  • Irandegan District contained two rural districts and no cities
  • Nukabad District contained four rural districts and one city

It can also be seen that districts may occasionally be separated from the county to become counties of their own. In this particular case, Nukabad District separated on 14 December 2018 to become Taftan County, after which the city of Nukabad was elevated to capital status within the newly created Central District of Taftan.[3]

Khash County (2006)[4]
Administrative Divisions Pop.
Central District 111,114
Esmailabad Rural District 16,940
Karvandar Rural District 6,028
Kuh Sefid Rural District 10,603
Poshtkuh Rural District 13,612
Sangan Rural District 7,248
Khash (city) 56,683
Irandegan District 12,432
Irandegan Rural District 4,232
Kahnuk Rural District 8,200
Nukabad District1 38,372
Eskelabad Rural District 6,527
Gowhar Kuh Rural District 9,100
Nazil Rural District 10,573
Taftan-e Jonubi Rural District 9,351
Nukabad (city) 2,821
Total 161,918
1Became a part of Taftan County[3]


  1. ^ Hashemi, Akbar (15 April 1362). "Law on definitions and rules of national divisions". Laws and Regulations Portal of the Islamic Republic of Iran (in Persian). Islamic Council. Archived from the original on 28 November 2018. Retrieved 12 January 2024.
  2. ^ Gwillim Law (1999). Administrative Subdivisions of Countries: A Comprehensive World Reference, 1900 Through 1998. Jefferson, NC: McFarland & Co. p. 183. ISBN 978-1-4766-0447-3. OCLC 910103003.
  3. ^ a b Jahangiri, Ishaq (13 September 2018). "Approval letter regarding the country divisions of Khash County of Sistan and Baluchestan province". Islamic Parliament Research Center of the Islamic Republic of Iran (in Persian). Ministry of Interior, Council of Ministers. Archived from the original on 24 January 2020. Retrieved 30 December 2023.
  4. ^ "Census of the Islamic Republic of Iran, 1385 (2006)" (Excel). Statistical Center of Iran. Archived from the original on 2011-09-20. Retrieved 17 December 2022

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