Kazakh woman may be oldest person by years

March 27, 2009 at 11:42 AM
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PRISHAKHTINSK, Kazakhstan, March 27 (UPI) -- A Kazakh woman who has identification giving her birth year as 1879 may be the oldest person alive -- years older than her closest contenders.

Sakhan Dosova's age was listed as 47 in 1926, when Josef Stalin held the first census of the Soviet Union, The Sun reports. If that is true, she was born the same year as Stalin and 10 years before Adolf Hitler, and was 60 the year World War II began.

She celebrated her birthday Friday.

Dosova, who lives in Prishakhtinsk, a small town in Kazakhstan, has clearly had a long life. Radio Free Europe says her exact age is difficult to verify because in the 19th century and for some years into the 20th birth certificates in Kazakhstan were often processed some years after the fact, with clerical errors frequent.

As to what has kept her going, Dosova, a mother of 11, credits her sense of humor and good habits -- eating cottage cheese and avoiding sweets.

Dosova is 12 years older than Tibet's Arme Tsering, who celebrated her 118th birthday March 16. But Tsering's age also is unconfirmed, Xinhua reported at the time.

Officially, the world's oldest person is Gertrude Baines, 114, an American.

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