Tajik Interior Minister Ramazon Rahimzoda yesterday met with his Kyrgyz counterpart Ulan Niyazbekov in the Tajik northern Sughd province to discuss a wide range of issues related to bilateral cooperation between the interior ministries of the two countries, according to the Tajik interior Ministry’s website.  

The two reportedly pointed to the necessity of taking joint efforts to provide security and stability in border districts of the Tajik Sughd province and the Kyrgyz Batken region.

On the same day, an enlarged meeting with participation of senior representatives of relevant police units of the two countries took place.  

They discussed ways to expand the bilateral cooperation in combating transnational crime, terrorism, extremism and drug trafficking.  

The sides confirmed their interest in expanding bilateral cooperation in combating crime and readiness to strengthen legal foundation of many years of activities, the Tajik interior Ministry’s website says.  

It is to be noted that many border areas in Central Asia have been disputed since the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991.  The situation is particularly complicated near the numerous exclaves in the Ferghana Valley, where the borders of Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, and Kyrgyzstan meet.

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

Border talks between Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan began in 2002.  The countries share 976 kilometers of border – of which only 504 kilometers has reportedly been properly delineated.

In 2019 alone, there were at least fourteen cases of violence, in which six Tajik nationals and one Kyrgyz citizen were killed and more than 60 other people were injured.

Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan renewed interest in border delimitation suggests that the governments want to dedicate more attention and resources to the communities living in the Ferghana Valley.