Two persons have been wounded in the latest shootout along the Tajik-Kyrgyz border. The incident has reportedly increased tension.

The shootout between Tajik and Kyrgyz border guards reportedly occurred yesterday evening near the Khistevarz jamoat in the Bobojon-Ghafourov district of the Tajik northern province of Sughd. 

Bobojon-Ghafourov district head Zafarbek Davlatzoda yesterday night confirmed in a telephone conversation with Asia-Plus that the shootout between border guards of the two countries took place near Tajikistan’s Khistevarz  jamoat and Kyrgyzstan’s Borboduk village.  

According to him, the shootout stopped after the meeting of the border representatives of Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan.

“Currently, the situation is under control and assessed as stable,” Davlatzoda added.  He refrained from giving further details of the conflict.  

Meanwhile Radio Liberty’s Tajik Service, known locally as Radio Ozodi, citing its source, says a 27-year-old Tajik border guard Zoir Saidumarov was seriously wounded in the shootout.

“As a result of the shootout, the 27-year-old Sergeant Zoir Saidumarov, the native of the Dousti district in the Khatlon province, was seriously wounded.  The sergeant has gunshot wounds to the abdomen and chest.  Now he is operated on, his condition is serious,” Radio Ozodi’s source said.  

Tajikistan’s border guard service has not yet commented on the conflict.

Meanwhile, Kyrgyzstan’s border guard service has accused Tajik border guards of triggering the conflict and opening fire on Kyrgyz border guards.

Kyrgyzstan's border guard service says one person has been wounded in the latest shootout near a disputed segment of the Kyrgyz-Tajik border.

A statement released by the Kyrgyz border guard service says border guards from the two countries started shooting at each other on April 12 near the village of Maksat in the Leilek district after Tajik border guards moved 20 meters inside Kyrgyz territory. 

Kyrgyz border guards reportedly fired warning shots, but Tajik border guards then started shooting at the Kyrgyz border guards.

According to the statement, one border guard was hospitalized with serious injuries, and several villages in the Leilek district were evacuated.  

The Kyrgyz border guard service described the situation along the border as tense and said the Kyrgyz State Committee for National Security is taking all measures to stabilize the situation.

Meanwhile, Kyrgyz news agency, citing an official with the Ministry of Health of Kyrgyzstan, says two with shrapnel wounds, one civilian and one border guard, were admitted to a hospital in the Leilek district.  

The yesterday shootout took place just weeks after border guards from the two sides exchanged fire on March 10.  According to a resident of Tajikistan’s Chorkuh jamoat, one Tajik border guard was killed and two others wounded then.

In late January, clashes erupted along a segment of the two countries' poorly demarcated border in a standoff over a blocked road.

Tajikistan's State Committee for National Security said at the time that two civilians were killed and 10 other people -- six security force members and four civilians – were wounded.

Kyrgyz authorities said 12 Kyrgyz nationals were seriously wounded and more than 24,200 Kyrgyz citizens were evacuated from the area because of the fighting in January.

In April 2021, clashes involving military personnel along the Tajik-Kyrgyz border left dozens of people dead on both sides.

The border of Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan has been the scene of unrest repeatedly since the collapse of the former Soviet Union.

It has been difficult to demarcate the Kyrgyz-Tajik border because over the course of some 100 years Soviet mapmakers drew and redrew the Kyrgyz-Tajik border, incorporating land that had traditionally belonged to one people in the territory of the other Soviet republic.

Exclaves appeared and temporary land use agreements were signed.

All of this survived the collapse of the Soviet Union and people in Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan have various Soviet-era maps they use to justify their claim to specific areas along the border.

Border talks between Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan began in 2002.  Only slightly more than half of the 970 kilometers of border shared by the two countries has been demarcated despite decades of attempts to bring the matter to a close.  The border delineation problem has led to conflicts between rival ethnic communities.