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Tajikistan: Warring Foes Agree To Talks In Moscow

Moscow, 10 December 1996 (RFE/RL) - Russia's Interfax news agency is reporting that the two leaders of the warring sides in Tajikistan's bitter four-year civil war agreed today to hold further talks without preconditions in Moscow next week.

Tajik President Emomali Rakhmonov met Islamist opposition leader Sayid Abdullohi Nuri in northern Afghanistan (Khostdekh) to lay the groundwork for a peace agreement to be signed in Moscow.

Interfax gave no further details. But an aide to Nuri cited earlier by the agency said a ceasefire accord and some form of coalition government were under consideration.

Fighting has flared in the former Soviet republic since the peace talks were announced at the end of last month, with each side trying to strengthen its negotiating position.

The four-year civil war has left tens of thousands dead and many more homeless in the remote, mountainous country bordering Afghanistan and China.