Military Review

Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan: Notes from the Fergana hotbed of tension

25
Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan: Notes from the Fergana hotbed of tension



People in protective form are on duty on opposite sides of a small bridge in the gorge: on the higher side in the apricot garden are located the Kyrgyz special forces and border guards; less than 15 meters away, a squad of Tajiks is looking through binoculars in uniform and unmarked with Kalashnikov assault rifles.

It is a bridge at the main water intake node at the conduit, through which water is supplied to downstream residential areas of Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan. The water intake itself is located in a disputed territory, which, despite the innumerable official meetings, has not been delimited since the collapse of the USSR in the 1991 year. This is an area where tension has reigned for a long time, and since January the situation has heated even more.

On a site located above the bridge, behind Kyrgyz tents and barriers of sandbags, behind piles of car tires, which servicemen burn at night to keep warm, bulldozers and concrete mixers froze. They built a new bypass road, which, a little closer in the past year to the main water intake and entering the disputed territory, exacerbated tensions at the border, threatening to destroy the fragile status quo. The new road would allow Kyrgyzstan to no longer use the existing common for two states route; in Tajikistan, they fear that this will push Kyrgyzstan to obstruct movement on this very common road, which may cut off the settlement in which about 30 thousands of Tajiks live.

On January 11, an exchange of fire took place on the main water intake area. By most evidence, this was the fiercest border clash between two generally peaceful neighbors. Both sides claim that the opposing side has started shooting first. At least eight people were injured in the shootout. According to Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan then used mortars and grenade launchers. The confrontation has been lasting for the third month, and so far there is little to say that tensions may soon discharge.

For many generations, Kyrgyz and Tajiks have lived together in this disputed territory. Today, their houses are “staggered” - there is no clear boundary, and citizenship coincides with nationality. As the population grows and water resources decrease in the surrounding valleys, militarization at the border increases and the possibility of violence increases. On-site decisions are made to the teeth by armed 18-year-old draftees, who are barely able to talk to each other: the majority speak only a little Russian who once served as the language of interethnic communication. These people get less than 6 dollars a month - that on one side of the border, that on the other.

“Ten years ago we talked with our Kyrgyz friends, played football together, went to visit each other. None of this anymore. Only this morning we were standing here, then Kyrgyz border guards came, cursed us and said that we have no right to be here, ”says 28-year-old Tajik Abdujalil Abdurahimov, who lives in a mixed-type village, which he calls Somoniyon, and Kyrgyz - Kok -Tash. The settlement is a group of fenced houses without central water supply and electricity supplied in a limited order, located in the downstream of the main water intake. “How much longer can we put up with this?” He adds, to the cheers of those gathered around the young Tajiks.

Both Kyrgyz and Tajiks complain of oppression by the border guards of the opposing side, as well as the fact that residents of the opposite nationality throw stones at their cars, and the young people start fights. Every year the situation is getting more and more aggravated, and every year more and more residents begin to believe that the solution is to establish a clear boundary. According to Abdujalil Abdurakhimov, who, like many young people in the village, goes to Russia to earn money every year (many apricot dealers in Moscow come from these places), one of the problems lies in the rapidly growing population. According to his calculations, 10 years ago five families lived in Somonyon (Kok-Tash), today their 150.

In the upper reaches of the village of Somoniyon (Kok-Tash) and the main water intake, the two countries are connected by a common road leading to the Kyrgyz village and the Tajik city. In the old days, this interdependence promoted peaceful interaction. Today the road is patrolled by servicemen of both sides. And this, it seems, is only just heating up the tension. When a car breaks down in a disputed territory or local Tajik residents climb onto a pole to fix a road sign that has faded so much that accidents have become more frequent at a dangerous turn, an excited crowd gathers around. Even the most insignificant dispute, which could have been easily resolved elsewhere, can immediately turn people against each other.

“I would not say that we were friends, but we communicated. Now, after the [January] conflict, complete zero. We do not even sell more groceries, - says 62-year-old Kyrgyz resident of the village Ak-Sai Turat Ahmedov. - The problem is that they want us to travel through their territory, so that we depend on them. They don't let us build our own road. ”

The bypass road, which Kyrgyzstan is building with the financial assistance of China through the hands of Chinese workers, goes to Ak-Sai, skirting the common road and the controversial two-kilometer stretch of apricot orchards and rice fields. This Kyrgyz village has a strategically important position: through it passes all the transport to the Tajik exclave Vorukh with its 30-thousandth population.

Kyrgyz and Tajik peace officers stop at a concrete sign indicating entry to Vorukh to chat (they are older than young recruits, and speak Russian decently), but then an aggressive group of young people appears and law enforcement officers ask everyone to leave the gravel road, denoting the actual border. The special forces unit of the Kyrgyz Ministry of Internal Affairs is stationed in an elementary school located on one side of the street. Children play in front of the building, and behind the house special forces in the field kitchen prepare lunch.

Officials on both sides insist that they do not want to fight, sentimentally speaking about peaceful good-neighborliness for "thousands of years." But the only tangible result that the parties reached in numerous meetings after the January shootout was the decision to hold additional meetings. Kyrgyzstan insists that the issue of road construction is not negotiable.

Kyrgyzstan’s chief negotiator, Deputy Prime Minister Tokun Mamytov, admits that it’s not easy to draw a border. Since 2006, the parties have not delimited a single kilometer on the disputed section of the total border of 460 km in 971 km. Negotiations are "deadlocked" because Kyrgyzstan refers to 1950-s cards, and Tajikistan - 1920-s. The border did not matter much when both republics submitted to the Kremlin. In Soviet times, the border changed its shape, when collective farms transferred plots of land to each other, and bare channels, like the lunar landscape, ground the earth, turning it into fertile farmland.

Tokun Mamytov, who is in charge of the power unit, tells how at the talks the representatives of Tajikistan told him: “If you build this road, you will get out of our control, and we want you to be under the control of Tajikistan.” They say that we will become too independent, that we should drive around Tajik territory. ” (Having promised to answer the written questions, the office of Mamytov’s colleague on negotiations, the Deputy Prime Minister of Tajikistan, Murodali Alimardon, refused to comment on the situation).

Tokun Mamytov rejects the idea that his government will ever cut the road leading to Vorukh as a punitive measure. However, such concerns on the part of Tajiks who are surrounded are quite understandable. In the process of approaching the road construction to the village of Ak-Sai and forcing tensions over the 2013 year, local residents repeatedly after some conflict attempted to cut off the neighboring communities, both Tajik and Kyrgyz. At the moment, Kyrgyzstan has suspended work on the construction of a scandalous bypass road. This led to the temporary establishment of peace, said Colonel Erzat Shamshiyev, chief of staff of the Regional Border Management Board of the Batken region. Showing with his hand to the rock that needs to be blown up to lay the road, looking older than his years, 38-year-old Erzat Shamshiyev says: “Tension subsided because construction stopped. But when it resumes, problems may start again. ”

When asked what is more important: the road or the world, he immediately replies: “The road”. And after a pause, he adds: “If there is no new road, we will have to go on a common road and in the end the conflict will still break out”.



Kyrgyz border guards patrol the road in the disputed territory connecting Ak-Sai with Kyrgyzstan and Vorukh with Tajikistan.



The Tajik and Kyrgyz military units are facing each other on opposite sides of the bridge.



Kyrgyz conscripts are trained at the Kapchagai frontier post in Ak-Sai village.



A Tajik military man guards a post in a disputed territory between Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan near a village called Tajiks Hoji Al



Kyrgyzstan is constructing new watch towers as part of measures to strengthen the border.



Young Tajiks from the village they call Somoniyon claim they are being bullied by Kyrgyz border guards



Kyrgyz Colonel Erzat Shamshiev is standing against a wall fired from Kalashnikovs during a shootout at a water intake.



A man walks along a road that passes through a disputed territory and connects Kyrgyzstan with Tajikistan.



Kyrgyz border guards are trained with a squad of special forces of the Ministry of Internal Affairs at the main water intake.



Kyrgyz conscripts prepare lunch at the Kapchagai border post in the village of Ak-Say.



Kyrgyz people wrangle with Tajik border guards, blocking the actual passage to the territory of the Tajik exclave Vorukh.



Kyrgyz border guard recruits patrolling Ak-Sai and the surrounding territory in an area disputed by the two countries.



In the lower reaches of the main water intake in the territory of Kyrgyzstan is Tortkulsky reservoir.



Kyrgyz conscripts train at the Kapchagai outpost in the village of Ak-Say



Residents of the predominantly Kyrgyz village of Ak-Sai located in the disputed territory play dominoes.



Tajik border guards block the actual entry into the Tajik exclave Vorukh
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25 comments
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  1. serega.fedotov
    serega.fedotov 27 March 2014 18: 22 New
    +6
    They would ask for GDP, it will share the water / it is because of it all the fuss /. The truth will not forget about RUSSIA!
  2. konvalval
    konvalval 27 March 2014 18: 25 New
    10
    This is the delights of the collapse of the USSR. Kyrgyz do not play football with Tajiks. As I recall what were the warriors, and those and others. And now I want to cry.
    1. The comment was deleted.
    2. Gennady1973
      Gennady1973 27 March 2014 21: 08 New
      +2
      konvalval.I'm with YOU for! but! I spoke, I speak, and I will speak. while on the territory of "our" - "ally" the NATO base is not an ally, there are not even words how to express (a knife in the back) The Kyrgyz must decide either with us ... or ... with them ..
  3. zulus222
    zulus222 27 March 2014 18: 27 New
    +4
    why are they scurrying about? water intake how to give drink we built.
  4. AleksPol
    AleksPol 27 March 2014 18: 34 New
    +5
    Quote: konvalval
    This is the delights of the collapse of the USSR. Kyrgyz do not play football with Tajiks. As I recall what were the warriors, and those and others. And now I want to cry.

    They are like that now. Hours of fire with mortars. 8 wounded. In general, it’s good that without 200x
  5. ya.seliwerstov2013
    ya.seliwerstov2013 27 March 2014 18: 35 New
    +3
    Quote: konvalval
    This is the delights of the collapse of the USSR. Kyrgyz do not play football with Tajiks. As I recall what were the warriors, and those and others. And now I want to cry.
    Cry with happiness? What now do not serve together?
  6. Gagarin
    Gagarin 27 March 2014 18: 38 New
    +7
    Amusing armies, clashes, results ...
  7. Humpty
    Humpty 27 March 2014 18: 42 New
    +6
    There Tajiks are bullshit. The thief was wild even during the union, now they are completely outlined. By the way, in the fifties, a medical "landing" was working in Vorukh in connection with almost universal syphilis.
    1. parazit
      parazit 27 March 2014 19: 13 New
      +5
      Read Przhevalskiy, very antiresno talks about the Kyrgyz people;) Not without reason, after "gaining" independence, the first to rename the city of Przhevalsk in Kara - Kol and broke his grave. Only after the intervention of the Russian side was the grave restored.
      1. Humpty
        Humpty 27 March 2014 19: 43 New
        +1
        Do you often go to that grave yourself? I once or twice a year.
        Well, Kyrgyz were buried there in a museum park about a hundred meters from Przhevalsky, a professor of the Kyrgyz sciences. Do not dig it out now. They don’t bury anyone anymore.
        You probably don't know Przewalski's catchphrase to the end, if you're interested, you'll find it yourself. Yes, about which of the travelers wrote what about these lands and people, then if you are interested in "warblers", then it is better to read Semyonov and Mushketov. Or reports on the campaigns of Kolpakovsky, too, not sickly. Better to take a comfortable position so as not to crash from the chair. I can still give advice on which of the travelers to read, if interested. The list of readings I have for this Temka is long.
        1. parazit
          parazit 27 March 2014 19: 51 New
          +2
          me something? In general, I lived in Frunze for almost 30 years, found independence, as the capital of the state was renamed a stick-whisk, I rode on the IR almost every week, so you can not tell me about the grave and history ... :)
          and by the way ... write his winged statement completely :)))
          and can share why the city was renamed, the grave destroyed ...?
          1. Humpty
            Humpty 27 March 2014 19: 54 New
            +2
            He ends his expression - you can hunt them, eat no.
            1. parazit
              parazit 27 March 2014 20: 00 New
              +5
              Przhevalsky’s attitude to Kyrgyzstan was peculiar - the place where he traditionally prepared for his Tibetan travels. On the one hand, he was very fond of the places there and said: "This is the same Switzerland, only better." On the other hand, he did not trust the Kirghiz too much and called the locals “a cunning, thieving people”. Locals in response did not favor Przhevalsky. They were especially angry for his words uttered about the Kirghiz themselves: “It is possible to hunt for them, but not to eat.” Nevertheless, there were no quarrels. The parties needed each other. Nikolai Mikhailovich provided the Kyrgyz with earnings, and those provided the necessary services along the way. First of all, of course, in the production of food. In a month, campaign participants shot about 30 large animals (mountain sheep, for example).


              this is so ... for completeness;)
    2. asar
      asar 28 March 2014 13: 49 New
      0
      visited Vorukh - normal people! helped with transport (we were "thrown" into the mountains - climbers!). Another thing is the National Guard, "stoned" and, for sure, "stung" youth (teenagers armed with machine guns - "we will bury you here and nothing will happen to us!" That is, these teenagers do not care who to "wet"! one row of PEOPLE and freaks! let's distinguish in relation to ourselves - who is who!
  8. kirqiz ssr
    kirqiz ssr 27 March 2014 18: 47 New
    -5
    how I got this division will unite the Russian Federation in one state and there will not be any division.
    1. Konstantm
      Konstantm 27 March 2014 18: 57 New
      +7
      For hell they all need !!!! Like a fifth wheel cart. Do we have all the problems resolved?
      1. asar
        asar 28 March 2014 13: 31 New
        -1
        yes they are not needed, maybe! Yes, they did not take place as independent, self-organized states, or something! but the problem is that their whole "mess" is closing in on Russia! Digress, but not so far - they all look like children whose "roof has moved down"! and mom says wrong, and dad is bad! in short, all against! and I am young, my parents do not understand me, and, in general, they are somehow "out of date"! and parents, thinking what to wear to the children in the kindergarten, wake up at night, sing lullabies, cover them with a blanket! Well, the child was naughty! It happens to everyone! and in the morning to the kindergarten, obey your parents, okay !?
    2. reg 71
      reg 71 27 March 2014 19: 16 New
      +5
      Why the heck they need Russia with its wild tribes
      1. zennon
        zennon 27 March 2014 21: 17 New
        +4
        Why the heck they need Russia with its wild tribes

        Is it okay that about 400 Russian people live there? By the way, I was born there and lived 000 years.
  9. konvalval
    konvalval 27 March 2014 18: 49 New
    +2
    Quote: ya.seliwerstov2013
    Quote: konvalval
    This is the delights of the collapse of the USSR. Kyrgyz do not play football with Tajiks. As I recall what were the warriors, and those and others. And now I want to cry.
    Cry with happiness? What now do not serve together?

    Yes, no, from laughter.
  10. SHOCK.
    SHOCK. 27 March 2014 18: 56 New
    +5
    In short, as I understood the whole problem is that they breed like rabbits. Let them limit the birth rate, otherwise they will remain not only without water, but also without food, and the diet, as one character used to say, cannot be violated.
  11. Smiles to you
    Smiles to you 27 March 2014 18: 57 New
    -3
    The situation will not settle down in any way ... Tops and roots will not understand each other ... Reminds Karabakh. We must intervene before the conflict escalates into one that the Yankers will swoop in and defend the "crap democracy" ...
  12. parazit
    parazit 27 March 2014 19: 08 New
    +3
    I had to be in the city of Khorog, and here the locals say that during the civil war, all goods went through Kyrgyzstan and they were torn off like sticky ... after that, the friendship ended completely. He witnessed that on the pass (Pamir) the Kyrgyz Kamaz broke down, so NONE of the Tajiks went to help ... Greed, envy and other delights made enemies of the peoples.
    1. Humpty
      Humpty 27 March 2014 19: 27 New
      +4
      If you see your Tajik Chebuldyk, then ask why they already fired at cars in the southwest in the 90s. Ask how the Russians (Ukrainians, Germans, Jews) were expelled and killed in the 90s. Because Kyrgyzstan was twice attacked by Tajikistan by large IMU gangs. They formed there in kishlaks not in a day, and where their border guards "looked".
      There is no need here to blame the obvious guilt of one sore head on another sore head.
      1. parazit
        parazit 27 March 2014 19: 43 New
        +3
        I drank all these boobies all the blood, every 10 km I must have a post, then drug control, then warriors, then hell understand someone.
        I’m writing what I heard and have no currency on anyone. Better look at the Kyrgyz borders ... with Tajiks on knives, with Kazakhs, rams, with Uzbeks in general, the massacre was ... probably not the neighbors around ...
        1. Humpty
          Humpty 27 March 2014 20: 16 New
          +1
          Why are the neighbors not the same ((, they are ALL about the same.
  13. Kyrgyz
    Kyrgyz 27 March 2014 19: 14 New
    +9
    23 years passed, and without creating anything, they continue to share the bits and pieces of past greatness, and it will be until they pass into citizenship of any of the neighbors, as the states they did not take place
  14. parus2nik
    parus2nik 27 March 2014 19: 20 New
    +3
    Reading this, I recall the novel by A. Tolstoy "The Hipreboloid of Engineer Garin" .. a description of the Golden Island .. how workers live on it .. workers of different nationalities, each live on his own piece of territory, which is fenced with barbed wire, walk in national clothes, so that they could not come to an agreement, there are provocateurs who sometimes play off peoples against each other ... and all this is being watched by the guards and the hyperboloid is aimed at the barracks ...
  15. sss5.papu
    sss5.papu 27 March 2014 19: 26 New
    +1
    Quote: Kirqiz SSR
    how I got this division will unite the Russian Federation in one state and there will not be any division.

    What extra money is there to share?
    1. ultra
      ultra 27 March 2014 21: 58 New
      +3
      There is no money and will not be! Visa regime with Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan and Tajikistan. Prohibition of obtaining citizenship, refusal of migrant workers from Asia! We got it already, if our government does not understand that this is necessary, then in the near future the people themselves will start throwing out our Asian "friends "!
  16. asar
    asar 27 March 2014 19: 51 New
    +4
    The region is definitely quite explosive! Everyone somehow got distracted from Central Asia, due to the recent events in Ukraine and Crimea. Although the escalation of tension in the region can have a rather serious impact both on the geopolitical position of Russia and on Russia itself. And in my opinion there are several reasons that could "blow up" the fragile peace in the region: 1) the problem with water. Indeed, the real reason for the events in Fergana in the late 80s and early 90s was because of the water! The Tajiks cut off the water giving life to the Fergana Valley, "other" forces intervened, and off we go! 2) demarcation of the territory. Since people did not really know what republic they lived in before (in Soviet times, this fact was not given much importance), but now everything has changed dramatically - suddenly a neighbor became an enemy, his land suddenly turned out to be better, and in general he is somehow not such a "wrong" or what ?! And now the road has become a stumbling block, according to David Trilling! It would be bad if the situation was used by forces capable of rocking the wobbly pillars of the armistice bridge! Do not forget about the proximity to Russia, because, firstly, a stream of refugees will rush there, and secondly, after the withdrawal of the coalition forces from Afghanistan, it is possible that both the ideas of radical Islam and the carriers of these ideas can have a very real impact on the situation in this enough "hot" region. The participation of all interested countries in the region, including Russia and the PRC, is required. This is because certain forces may act through this region, interested in destabilizing the situation both in the countries adjacent to Russia and, ultimately, in Russia itself.
    1. Konstantm
      Konstantm 27 March 2014 20: 49 New
      +1
      If you tear Sarezka reservoir in Tajikistan, then the water of Central Asia will last for a long time. Memory will live for centuries.
      1. Humpty
        Humpty 27 March 2014 21: 26 New
        +2
        Quote: KonstantM
        If you tear Sarezka reservoir in Tajikistan, then the water of Central Asia will last for a long time. Memory will live for centuries.


        In fact, this is a young natural lake .It is considered to be a breakthrough hazard. If it moves out completely, then the Aral Sea will be temporarily restored ((.
        1. asar
          asar 28 March 2014 13: 10 New
          0
          And on the way "eat" half of the population of Central Asia! very cool! don't be YOU ALL SO CRUEL! the common people are not to blame for geopolitical changes! and those that "trade" on the Russian markets are no longer the "indigenous" population of Central Asia! these are people who have already forgotten where they come from! they don't care about the problems of the "small homeland"!
      2. asar
        asar 28 March 2014 13: 01 New
        0
        well, tear! so, what is next? who will suffer ?! only civilians (who have children, their own household!)! such actions do not solve the problem, this is not an option (and this is not a market for serious people)! drastic measures are needed - employment problems, at least!
  17. Michael KG
    Michael KG 27 March 2014 21: 57 New
    +4
    Quote: KonstantM
    If you tear Sarezka reservoir in Tajikistan, then the water of Central Asia will last for a long time. Memory will live for centuries.


    Tear, blow, and we, as we live on a barrel of gunpowder, this is far from a joke and not a child’s game,
    tensions are already lacking in the country. We sit and do not know which side the wick will burn out before ...
  18. Bargus
    Bargus 28 March 2014 01: 37 New
    +1
    In my opinion, Russia does not need (to collect stones) history will return to normal, as was the case under the autocracy under (the communists truth in a peculiar interpretation, all power to the people) and under the current government, where the people of Russia voluntarily delegated their power (to the servants of the people). One thing is reassuring, Russia is the heiress of the spirit and epic of ancient St. Russi, always defended and played the consolidating role of other peoples and nations. And as a strict Mother punished and forgave her children for pranks and treason.
  19. Michael KG
    Michael KG 28 March 2014 08: 24 New
    0
    Quote: ultra
    There is no money and will not be! Visa regime with Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan and Tajikistan. Prohibition of obtaining citizenship, refusal of migrant workers from Asia! We got it already, if our government does not understand that this is necessary, then in the near future the people themselves will start throwing out our Asian "friends "!


    Thus, actually manually creating a huge hotbed of instability and tension, which then you yourself understand that will come out sideways. Does Russia have such a policy now? Stability in Russia itself also depends on stability in the Asian region.
    Residents of Kyrgyzstan openly want to unite with Russia, on inform resources you can often read about the referendum ... But you yourself understand this is not the Crimea.