Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan Complete Troops Withdrawal from Border
By Staff, Agencies
Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan completed the process of withdrawing their military units from their shared border after agreeing on a ceasefire, Kyrgyzstan’s Border Service reported on Monday.
“The parties completed the withdrawal of extra forces and means from the state border line inward to their territories,” the service noted.
It also stressed that the joint commission consisting the representatives of defense ministries of the two Central Asian countries will continue their work.
Additionally, it noted that the situation on the border and in adjacent areas is currently “stable” and there is no indication of any further incidents and shootings.
"The tragedy that happened in the border area must never happen again," Saimumin Yatiyev, head of Tajikistan's State National Security Committee, said as he stood next to his Kyrgyz counterpart Kamchybek Tashiyev, in a joint briefing in Kyrgyzstan.
Earlier this week, 49 people were killed in clashes between military forces from the two countries.
The clashes erupted along the border between Tajikistan's Sughd province and Kyrgyzstan's southern Batken province because of a dispute over a reservoir and pump on the Isfara River.
Villagers on opposite sides of the borderline hurled rocks at each other, and border guards entered the fray with weapons, mortars, and even a Tajik attack helicopter, according to Kyrgyz border guards.
Dozens of buildings were burned or destroyed, including a school, a border checkpoint and a fire station.
Over 27,000 people were evacuated from the conflict zone and May 1-2 were declared national days of mourning in Kyrgyzstan.
After two days of armed skirmishes, on the evening of April 29, the heads of the countries' state security bodies announced the ceasefire agreement and the pullout of troops.