The Persian Empire is a nation state in Central Asia. The nation currently shares its borders with the Ottoman Empire to the west, to the east by Makran, Kalat and Afghanistan, to the North by Khiva and Russia, and to the South by the Persian Gulf.
The Empire is ruled by the House of Qajar, who took power in 1785 and established full control over Persia from the Zand dynasty in 1795, with Mohammed Khan Qajar formally crowned Shah of Persia the following year.
The Qajar Dynasty came to power as a result of a conflict between them and the House of Zand which ruled Southern Persia. Agha Mohammad Khan Qajar undertook a brutal campaign which ended with the death of Lotf Ali Khan Zand in 1794.
The Qajar would later fight two wars with the Russian Empire (1804-1813 and 1826-1828 respectively) which ended with Russian control over Northern Azerbaijan, moves confirmed by the Treaties of Gulistan (1813) and Turkmenchay (1828)
It was Fatih Ali Shah that began to increase diplomatic contacts with the western world, bringing a conflict of influence between the United Kingdom, the Russian Empire and until 1845, the Ottoman Empire.
Expansion of Persian Power into Afghanistan (1834-1840)
Mohammed Shah, who succeeded Fatih in 1834 sought to expand Persian power and successfully began a conquest of Herat and much of Afghanistan. A combination of Russian influence in Persian politics followed by Britain's combined failure to combat both Russian influence in Persia and the Sikhs in the Punjab led to the Perso-Afghan War. Persian Armies trekked across the Afghan mountains with an ally in the Emir of Bukhara. There were skirmishes against the various Afghan armies as the Persian army trekked through to Herat, successfully engaging and defeating them in Herat in 1838. Victory there, as well as the capture of Kabul by the Bukharan Uzbeks ended the conflict, forcing the Afghan Emir to sign away not only Herat, but roughly 80 percent of their pre-war territory to the Persian Empire.
Persian Influence and Conquests in Central Asia (1840-1890)
Persia's annexation of much of Afghanistan led to a shift in foreign policy from the South Caucasus to Central Asia, which became focused on pitting the Central Asian states each other, all while supporting the Bukharans in uniting the Turkic states together. This culminated in a series of wars fought against the Khiva and the Kokand Khanates for the next 50 years. These conflicts in Central Asia served to weaken the Khanates power. Persia itself fought Khiva in two wars (1846, 1856-57) which saw the Dashowuz region (OTL Central Turkmenistan) come under control by the Qajar dynasty. Persia also lent support to Bukhara against the Kokand Khanate (1856-1857, 1883-1884), which saw much of their Khanate's lands annexed into Bukhara, rapidly growing to become one of the most powerful states in Central Asia.