Tajikistan Celebrates 20th Anniversary Of Peace Accord Ending Civil War
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Tajikistan is marking the 20th anniversary of the signing of the Tajik Peace Accord that ended a five-year civil war between the secular government and the coalition of opposition groups led by Islamic forces.
The town of Vahdat, some 25 kilometers east of the capital, Dushanbe, is hosting official celebratory events on June 27 that will include a speech by President Emomali Rahmon and a concert.
Security was stepped up in the town ahead of the event in the city's sports stadium, where some 30,000 people are expected to gather.
Markets have been closed and public transport has been canceled.
The peace treaty was signed on June 27, 1997, between Rahmon and Said Abdullo Nuri, the leader of the United Tajik Opposition (UTO) in Moscow after a series of peace talks brokered by the United Nations.
The deal included a political settlement that would give 30 percent of government positions to UTO representatives.
Tajikistan has since banned the Islamic Renaissance Party that was officially registered during the peace process. In 2015, Tajikistan's Supreme Court declared the party to be a terrorist organization and jailed several high-ranking party officials on terrorism-related charges.
Rahmon, who has been ruling the Central Asian nation since 1992, is widely criticized for suppressing dissent and for widespread corruption in government agencies.
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