Afghanistan is highly regarded for ruby corundum coming from mines in Jegdalek.  The contact twin on the far left is from the collection of Andreas Weerth, and it appeared in the Extra Lapis devoted to corundum.  The one on its right shows superb terminations, and is probably from Jegdalek, as is indicated by the small crystals of phlogopite (tan mica) in the calcite. 


     However, it may be from the Hunza Valley in Pakistan (illustrating our observation that some specimens from that region cross many borders before being bestowed with an origin)!  On the right is a superb purplish ruby cluster, recently found and brought to us from Peshawar in September, 2012.


      A recent discovery in Badakhshan, on the border with Tajikistan, has produced some interesting sapphires.  The crystal on the left is about 3 inches long.  It has a flattened hexagonal outline, and is nicely terminated.  It was purchased from Andreas Weerth in Tucson.  The two on the right are from Peshawar dealer Muhammad Shaffi. 

       I am indebted to Aisha Jan of Rocksaholics (website http://www.rocksaholics.com/) , whom I met in Islamabad while on a visit to the Nangi Mali Ruby Mine in Azad Kashmir, for detailed locality information and the specimens below.  The giant one on the far left was featured in the Blue Cap video, "What's Hot in Tucson, 2012".