Kyrgyz leader urges calm after deadly conflict with Tajikistan
Kyrgyz President Sadyr Japarov urged his country on Monday to have trust in its army and strategic partners, and said there was no need for volunteer forces at the border with Tajikistan after deadly clashes there last week, News.az reports citing Gazeta.ru
At least 100 people were killed between Sept. 14 and 16 in fighting involving the use of tanks, aviation and rocket artillery on a disputed section of the border in Kyrgyzstan's Batken province.
"We continue our efforts to resolve the Kyrgyz-Tajik border issues in a purely peaceful way," Japarov said in a televised address on a national day of mourning.
"Another point I would like to mention: I urge calm among the men and youths who are willing to go to Batken ... We have courageous warriors and enough forces to repel those who violate our borders."
Japarov also asked Kyrgyz not to trust "provocateurs who slander our strategic partners, friendly nations and peoples who share our position".
Separately, Kyrgyz authorities said they had negotiated on Monday for the release of four border guards who had been captured by Tajik troops during the conflict.
Tajikistan's foreign ministry said on Monday the key to resolving the conflict lay in negotiations, and it reiterated its position that Kyrgyzstan had instigated the fighting.
Deputy Foreign Minister Sodik Emomi told a briefing that ethnic Tajiks who were not Tajik citizens were being detained in Kyrgyzstan and that Kyrgyz drones had been spotted flying into Tajik territory overnight.