Kyrgyzstan & Tajikistan sign ceasefire agreement after violent border clashes that injured scores and killed at least 30 people
The authorities of Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan have issued a statement after at least 30 people were killed on their shared border following a shootout over a water distribution facility. Both nations claim to be its rightful owner.
Tempers began to flare between local residents on Wednesday, when Tajikistan installed surveillance cameras near the Golovnoi water intake facility, a vital distribution point in the arid region, where water for irrigation is of vast importance. A day later, both countries moved their troops in. The clash was the latest in a long series of disputes caused by the poor demarcation of the Kyrgyz-Tajik border, despite the two post-Soviet nations being independent for 30 years.
Thursday’s armed clashes between troops of the two countries not only caused more than dozens of casualties, but led to the burning down of residential buildings, as well as a school and a border checkpoint.Also on rt.com Tajikistan launches first phase of hydro power station dam, set to become world’s largest (VIDEO)
A ceasefire was agreed in the evening, at 17.00 Moscow time.
Both Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan are members of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), a group of nine countries that were formerly republics of the Soviet Union. They are also part of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO), a smaller, six-country military alliance. The largest member of CSTO and CIS, Russia, welcomed news of a ceasefire.
“We call on the parties, through further negotiations in the spirit of alliance and good neighborliness, to reach stable and long-term agreements that will normalize the situation,” a statement from Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said, following the announcement.
On Friday morning, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov revealed that Russian President Vladimir Putin is ready to act as a mediator between Bishkek and Dushanbe.
Following the ceasefire, Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan agreed to hold talks in the Tajik city of Isfara, with the aim of solving the disagreement.
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