Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan Trade Accusations At UN Over Recent Border Clashes

3 months ago Web Desk Comments Off on Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan Trade Accusations At UN Over Recent Border Clashes

Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan have continued to blame each other for recent deadly clashes along their border.

Speaking at the UN General Assembly on September 24, Tajik Foreign Minister Sirojiddin Muhriddin responded to a speech made earlier to the assembly by Kyrgyz President Sadyr Japarov.

Muhriddin repeated Tajikistan’s claim that Kyrgyzstan was responsible for deviating from a cease-fire worked out on September 19 to halt the clashes that broke out the week prior.

Kyrgyzstan has said it is fully complying with the agreement.

Muhriddin accused Kyrgyzstan of creating a false appearance of withdrawing its troops and military equipment from the conflict zone and of hiding them in populated areas near its border with Tajikistan.

Muhriddin said that “the responsibility for any next round of tension on the Tajik-Kyrgyz border will lie exclusively with Kyrgyzstan,” while also saying his country was willing “to continue negotiations toward building together an atmosphere of peace.”

The comments came after Japarov told the General Assembly on September 20 that Tajikistan had violated agreements worked out by former Soviet republics calling for them to respect each other’s territorial integrity.

He said that Tajikistan had launched an unprovoked attack on his country in April 2021 and again on September 14 of this year.

Japarov said he was prepared to “spend as much time as possible to resolve” the border dispute.

The latest fighting over the unresolved Tajik-Kyrgyz border has resulted in the deaths of at least 100 people.

Kyrgyz officials say 59 citizens died in the recent clashes and 183 people were injured.

Tajikistan has put its death toll at 41, but correspondents of RFE/RL’s Tajik Service reported a higher number after talking to relatives and friends of the people killed during the clashes. They concluded that 59 people, including 31 civilians, lost their lives and compiled a list of those killed.

Many border areas in Central Asia have been disputed since the Soviet Union’s collapse in 1991.

The situation is particularly complicated near the numerous exclaves in the volatile Ferghana Valley, where the borders of Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan meet.

Almost half of the 970-kilometer Kyrgyz-Tajik border has yet to be demarcated, leading to repeated tensions since the two countries gained independence more than three decades ago.

Copyright (c) 2015. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave NW, Ste 400, Washington DC 20036.