In the early nineties, the “Islamic Renaissance Party of Tajikistan” in Afghanistan, with the support of the Government of Pakistan, expressed its readiness to launch hostilities with “infidels” in the territory of neighboring states. In the spring of 1993, at least a thousand armed fighters concentrated in the province of Afghanistan, Sarvada, began the transfer of armored personnel carriers and ferry vehicles to the border, which, it was clear to all, would soon become the site of bloody battles. Tajikistan, which was always one of the most backward republics of the USSR, after the civil war of 1992-1993, was generally on the very edge of the abyss. The government was actually paralyzed, which was skillfully used by terrorists, mojaheds and drug traffickers in neighboring Afghanistan. There was a stream of drugs across the border and weapons.
25 May 1993 was approved the Treaty of Friendship and Mutual Assistance between Tajikistan and Russia, as well as a number of documents relating to the military units of our country in the territory of this state. The most important was the Agreement on the legal status of domestic border troops. On the one hand, the political situation in Tajikistan itself, heated to the limit, demanded the participation of an authoritative neighbor, and on the other, the situation in Afghanistan, where the Najibullah regime was violently overthrown, required no less explosive situation. In accordance with the Agreement, Tajikistan gave our Frontier Forces all the powers to protect its borders with China and Afghanistan. In fact, this meant that the defense of the most complex Tajik-Afghan sector was entrusted to the Russian military.
During the spring of 1993, fighting clashes on the border took place almost every day. The Afghan Mujahideen, together with the Tajik opposition, made ever more persistent attempts at a breakthrough, but all of them were promptly and successfully suppressed. For example, on March 8 on the night of 1993 on the night, fifty militants attacked the ninth outpost of the Moscow frontier detachment. The attack was repelled, but 16 and 30 in March, the gangsters again attempted to pass on other sectors. In early April, soldiers of the sixteenth frontier guard defeated a militant detachment during the crossing of Pyanj. 29 May evening, the terrorists unsuccessfully stormed the eleventh outpost. In June, the decision of the Judicial Collegium in Tajikistan closed all opposition parties. This decision, as well as the huge losses from the Russian troops, to the extreme embittered the leaders of the gangs. Having gathered strength, they decided on a step unprecedented up to this point.
The last months before the tragic events of the twelfth outpost lived according to a special schedule. The outfits did not go out to patrol the borders, all the people sat at the base, serving directly at the reference point. News one was more disturbing than the other. Neighboring posts were constantly subjected to shelling and attacks. Afghan Mujahideen became so impudent that they carried out the crossing over the Pyanj practically every night. However, the border guards were barely enough even to defend their fortifications. And the technical equipment left much to be desired. For example, outdated domestic radio stations could not work further ten to twelve kilometers (this is taking into account the fact that one outpost from another was at a distance of about twenty kilometers). As subsequent events, the Japanese devices that the militants showed, ensured a stable connection for fifty kilometers.
At dawn of 13 on July 1993 of the year, militant detachments of a total of more than two hundred men approached the twelfth outpost of the Moscow frontier detachment. They walked in complete silence, barefoot climbing up hillsides. They were led by Kari Hamidullo, the leader of the Islamic Party of Afghanistan. However, the direct leadership was carried out by the commander of the 55 Infantry Division of the IRA Ministry of Defense, Kazi Kabir. Khattab was still walking among the gangsters at that time. The formations that attacked the frontier post were not only perfectly prepared and armed, but also well-motivated, thanks to which they fought with particular anger and bitterness.
Obviously, the main purpose of the terrorist attack was the complete elimination of the outpost. This would allow them to gain a foothold in Tajikistan and launch an offensive on the Kulyab area. In addition, large losses among Russian servicemen should have caused outrage among members of the Russian public, demanding the withdrawal of the entire Russian military contingent from Tajikistan. And without the support of a powerful ally, overthrowing the government of this country will be a simple matter.
A few days before the attack, residents of nearby villages were warned of an impending attack. “Retribution” was the name the action was called by militants, bearing in mind past failures. Residents were promised complete security, however, most of the people at large filled their belongings a few hours before the attack went into the mountains. Unfortunately, none of them had warned the Soviet fighters.
The twelfth outpost is based on a flat platform measuring approximately two hundred by fifty meters and surrounded on three sides by mountains. Around some lifeless stones, bare rocks, precipices with rare patches of shrubs. Mountains crawl one on another, between the heights of impassable gulf, allowing you to freely shoot with them, without fear of assault. It was on them that the gangsters surrounded the outpost in the morning. The only road, which could come reinforcements, mined. Slowly, spooks set up twelve machine-gun points, sniper positions, installed two mortars and four recoilless guns, five rocket launchers, prepared dozens of hand-held grenade launchers for battle. Dozens of eyes with the help of night-vision devices continuously watched the outpost fighters.
Lieutenant, deputy head of the twelfth frontier post Andrei Viktorovich Merzlikin was born on November 8 of the 1968 year in the village of Ternovka, Voronezh region. He spent his childhood in the city of Lipetsk. He graduated from high school, entered the Metallurgical Institute of Lipetsk. In 1986, he was drafted into the Border Guards, from where he entered the Moscow Higher Border Command School in 1988, graduating from 1992. He served in the Northeast Border District, at the beginning of 1993, he was sent to Tajikistan. After the head of the Mayborod outpost died at the beginning of the battle, Andrei Merzlikin assumed command, organized the defense and took the most direct part in repelling the first attack of militants at the site of administrative buildings. He was contused and wounded twice. When I realized that there was no chance of survival, I gathered all the remaining fighters and led them to a breakthrough. After recovery, he remained to serve in the frontier troops. Went to stock at the beginning of the 2000-s in the rank of major.
At 4 o'clock in the morning, the guard of the border guards noticed in the morning dusk silhouettes of people. The entire outpost was immediately raised to battle. Realizing that they were found, the militants proceeded to a massive shelling of fortifications. Missiles were flown into the armory and dormitory. In the smoke, burning, starting a fire, the border guards seized weapons and ammunition, took up their positions. Artillery attack was also used. Shells and mines heaped down at the dining room, barracks, artillery and technical armament warehouse. Continuously falling shells did not allow them to raise their heads, and those who tried to answer, fell, thrown by sniper bullets. Thus, at the very beginning of the battle, the commander of the outpost Mikhail Mayboroda was mortally wounded. Leadership staff had to take the lieutenant Andrei Merzlikin.
Sergeant Sergey Alexandrovich Yevlanov was born on May 23 of the year 1973 in the Kurgan Region in the village of Vargashi. He graduated from high school and vocational school. In December, 1991 went to serve in the army. In the battle at the twelfth outpost, he showed exceptional resilience and courage, covering the withdrawal of the surviving group of border guards. He destroyed many militants, was wounded by a fragment of a shell that pierced through the left side of the chest. After recovery, he returned home. He graduated from the Ural University and currently lives in Yekaterinburg.
Motor riflemen did not have time to get to their BMP. It was the only combat vehicle in service with border guards, staffed by a crew of three X men of the 149 motorized rifle regiment. They were sent to strengthen, shortly before the July events, in response to Mikhail Mayboroda’s repeated appeals about the need for completing the missing personnel. The car was well viewed from afar, reactive complexes were aimed at it in advance. At the very beginning of the battle, the concentrated fire dushmans managed to set it on fire. The crew fought next to the burning BMP, not allowing bandits. Here all three fighters died.
Sergeant Vladimir Elizarov was among the attendants who discovered the militants and raised the alarm. Due to accidental circumstances, Elizarov found himself at a distance from the barracks, where the main forces held defenses. Together with a group of three people, Vladimir fought back for two hours. When the other fighters died, the wounded sergeant tried to break through. The closest point was the kennel service dog. On the way to him, he was surrounded by five gangsters who tried to take him alive. Elizarov was killed during hand-to-hand combat. Later scum outraged the body of a courageous fighter. Vladimir Elizarov was buried in Tver.
When it dawned among the border guards there were already big losses, and the situation was getting complicated. Under the cover of machine guns, all-dark Afghan mojaheds, shouting “Allah Akbar!”, Rushed into the first attack. However, she was repulsed, as the second and all subsequent ones. In this seemingly hopeless situation, the Russian guys did not fall into despair, did not panic. They selflessly continued to fight a more numerous enemy.
Sergeant Sergey Sushchenko was born on April 28 of the year 1973 in the city of Dalmatovo (Kurgan Region). He studied in gymnastics college, at the end of 1991, he was drafted into the army. At the twelfth outpost served as a machine gunner. During the battle, he voluntarily stayed behind to cover the departure of a group of colleagues. Restrained the onslaught of the enemy, until he died. The brave sergeant was buried in his hometown.
Realizing that it would not be possible to take the outpost quickly and without losses, the militants tightened the shelling. The building of the head and the barracks was spread to the very foundation. The rest of the buildings were burning, even the earth was burning, there was solid smoke around. Border guards for further defense had to go into the trenches. On a par with the Russian guys in that battle, the outpost was defended by Uzbek and Tajik servicemen. The soldiers heard the noise of the blades of a helicopter taking off for reconnaissance. Despite the fact that it was already six hours, they were still waiting for help ... However, from the side from where it was supposed to appear, the battle echoes began to reach. And soon the ammunition began to come to an end. Most of them disappeared in the first minutes of the attack after the weapon room was destroyed. The fighters collected cartridges from the bodies of dead comrades and militant corpses. All living were injured or contused. Realizing that help is not exactly on time, Andrei Merzlikin, who has taken the place of the deceased commander, decides to begin a breakthrough to the rear with those fighters who were still on their feet. Further, to stay in an open and well-swept area without ammunition meant to doom yourself to certain death. During the minute lull, the lieutenant gathered border guards who were nearby and outlined to them his plan of withdrawal: two or three people would break through, the rest covered up. Several injured children, who could no longer move because of their injuries, offered to cover the waste of the rest of the squad members. At the cost of their own lives, they were ready to save their comrades, knowing full well what fate awaited them.
Private Igor Viktorovich Filkin was born on November 30 of the year 1972 in the village of Ibred in the Ryazan region. He graduated from eight classes of secondary school and technical school. Before going to the army in the 1991 year, he worked as a gas and electric welder at the Ibred Starch and Patches Plant. He served as a mechanic and linear supervisor of communications and alarm systems, and also served as a machine gunner on the combat schedule. In his last battle, he did not let the militants break through to our positions. According to eyewitnesses, he fought with inhuman tenacity and rage, was wounded several times, but continued to shoot back. Only a grenade that exploded near it could stop it. Igor Filkin is buried in his native village.
Meanwhile, having learned of the attack on the frontier post, the leadership of the Moscow detachment decided to send a backup support group to the scene of the battle. Major V.К. volunteered to lead it. Masyuk. By his order, helicopters took off. They housed the entire reserve of the detachment, forty-one people, and in the direction of the thirteenth outpost ("Iol"), an armored column emerged. At nine in the morning the reserve was already at the next outpost. Here they were joined by thirty-two people on two armored personnel carriers. At the same time, a team of eighteen fighters of the 201 motorized rifle division, which included the Shilka self-propelled anti-aircraft gun, rescued the Kulyab for help. As soon as the descent began along the only road to the twelfth outpost, both groups encountered pre-prepared militant ambushes, and the most difficult sections of the route were mined. It took a lot of time for the sappers to check the road, to search and deactivate mines, and support helicopters were used to disperse the ambushes. The reserve column moved forward in a snail's pace. At the same time, the last patrons of the border guards holding the defense ran out.
There was another unpleasant moment. When it became clear that the outpost was not a simple raid, but an almost full-scale invasion of the Afghan army, the crews of an armored personnel carrier and tank Tajik armies refused to move on. The armored vehicles of the National Security Committee of the republic turned around and drove back. The Tajik guard forces also did not want to come to the rescue.
Without reaching about five kilometers to the outpost, the fighters of the reserve team met a group of nineteen surviving border guards who managed to break through the orders of the Mujahideen with their last strength. By that time, their commander Andrei Merzlikin was already contused twice and could not even speak normally. Clothing on the disengaged military hung ragged, bloody rags, many fighters were unable to stand on their feet for fatigue. Tears gleamed in the eyes of these courageous people. Called a helicopter evacuated miraculously saved in a meat grinder. Also, during the advance to the location of the outpost, the reserve group found a wounded Private Aminov, who was unconscious. He was immediately sent to the hospital.
Private Sergey Nikolayevich Borin was born on October 14 of the 1973 year in Izhevsk. He graduated from high school and local vocational school. He worked as a turner in a mechanical plant. In the Moscow frontier detachment was transferred from the Trans-Baikal border district. In a battle by fire with a machine gun, time after time he repulsed attacks by militants, did not let them approach the outpost. By that moment, when the spirits bypassed his position, the three times wounded Sergey Borin had literally bled to death, but did not stop shooting. He is buried in Izhevsk at the Aleksandrovsky cemetery on the Alley of Heroes-internationalists. In the 2003 year, his name was assigned to Izhevsk Mechanical Lyceum No. 9.
Immediately after the meeting with the remnants of the frontier detachment, the support column ran into a land mine and simultaneously came under machine-gun fire. However, they had something to answer the enemy. Slowly clearing the road and methodically knocking out the dushmans from the positions, the border guards recaptured altitude after altitude, approaching the burning down frontier post. From the air they were helped by flying, finally, Mi-24, which the spirits could no longer withstand. At fifteen o'clock in the afternoon the airborne assault group of Captain Basmanov swept away the last machine-gun crew of the militants and went to the outpost. Only there was no one to save here .... During the withdrawal, spooks decided to level the rebellious outpost with the ground and set fire to the remains of the surviving buildings. The bodies of dead border guards, mutilated beyond recognition, lay everywhere. Over many fallen spooks had time to outrage ....
At dawn, the rescue squad began to remove the bodies of servicemen lying everywhere in the outpost and in the trenches along the mountainside. In total, twenty-five killed soldiers were discovered: twenty-two border guards and three motorized riflemen. All the dead were plunged into the “Black Tulip”, which brought the bodies to Dushanbe. And from there the heroes were transported to the cities and villages of the once united state.
There were also some more survivors. First, Private Barbashov came out to the fighters, and a little later Private Bobokhodzhayev, Junior Sergeant Akhunov and Private Ponomarev. Having spent all the ammunition, they left their trench during the battle and hid in a mountain cleft, where they spent the whole day. Only the next day they decided to return to the outpost. About thirty corpses of militants were found, but the surviving spirits of the dead were able to carry them with them. According to experts, the total losses of the attackers amounted to more than seventy people.
According to the Decree of the President of the Russian Federation under the number 1050, published on July 19 of 1993, six frontier guards participating in the events of July 13 were awarded the title “Hero of Russia”. Among them were the surviving Andrei Merzlikin and Sergei Evlanov, as well as the dead Sergei Borin, Vladimir Elizarov, Igor Filkin and Sergei Sushchenko. Twenty-nine servicemen were awarded the Order “For Personal Courage”, and seventeen border guards received the Medal “For Courage”.
Some time later, at least terrible and bloody battles took place in the same part of the border, deserving separate articles. At the border post called "Turg", a handful of soldiers, led by senior lieutenant Vyacheslav Tokarev, fought off hundreds of militants. And at the post of "Mercury" twelve border guards of Senior Lieutenant Medvedev for three long hours kept the gangs bursting through them. In general, from 1992 to 2005, Russian border guards stationed in Tajikistan detained over three thousand violators, seized over a thousand firearms (from man-portable air defense systems to machine guns), over four hundred thousand different ammunition (jet and artillery shells, mines, cartridges), destroyed about three thousand militants of various groups. A huge contribution was made by our border guards in the fight against drug trafficking. They eliminated more than thirty thousand kilograms of narcotic drugs, of which about eleven tons of heroin. For thirteen years, more than three and a half thousand border incidents (armed clashes, shelling, and attempts to break through the border) took place in the Tajik-Afghan area, which resulted in the death of one hundred sixty-one Russian fighter and three hundred sixty-two injured.
Today they like to say that today's youth, they say, has gone already not that ... Say, she can not, like their ancestors, stand up for the honor of the country. This is a clear lie. On the question of what the Soviet soldiers fought for there, in distant Tajikistan, actually in a territory alien to them, the survivors answered with confidence that they were defending their homeland. They could not allow unruly bandit formations, leaking through the borders, to bring war to our land! Russia keeps and will keep thanks to such people. The defenders of the twelfth outpost fought like lions with a much stronger opponent and, showing the world an example of military valor and courage, fulfilled their stern duty to the end.
On the basis of the events that took place, the feature film Silent Gate was shot. And instead of the destroyed twelfth frontier outpost, a new outpost was built high in the mountains, which was named after the fallen twenty-five heroes.
13 July 1993 at the 12 border post 117 of the Moscow border detachment died: