DUSHANBE, August 22, 2011, Asia-Plus  -- Uzbek authorities will not close border checkpoints with Tajikistan this year ahead of Uzbekistan’s Independence Day, which is marked on September 1, the source at the Uzbek Embassy in Dushanbe told Asia-Plus Monday afternoon.

“All checkpoints on the Tajik-Uzbek border function in a normal regime and persons having appropriate documents may proceed via the border checkpoints without any limitations,” said the source, “Meanwhile, the number of Tajik nationals applying for Uzbek visa has considerably decreased ahead of Uzbekistan’s Independence Day.  People probably do not know that Uzbekistan will not close border checkpoints with Tajikistan ahead the Independence Day celebrations this year.”

We will recall that Tashkent usually has in the past closed its border checkpoints with neighboring countries on the eve of official holidays, such as Independence Day, Constitution Day, which is marked on December 8, or a presidential election.

Uzbekistan introduced a visa regime with Tajikistan in 2001 that made travel between the two countries more difficult.  There have not been any flight connections between Uzbekistan for several years.