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Kyrgyz Arrest Four Tajiks Near Border

  • RFE/RL's Kyrgyz Service

The Vorukh enclave in the Batken region (file photo)

The Vorukh enclave in the Batken region (file photo)

BATKEN, Kyrgyzstan -- Officials in Kyrgyzstan say they have arrested four Tajik citizens who were wearing camouflage and carrying weapons and ammunition in southern Batken Province.

Kyrgyz State Border Service spokeswoman Sajida Chokoloeva told RFE/RL that the men, who were detained on the morning of September 2, were armed with five guns, including two sniper rifles. The four have been charged with illegal border crossing and illegal hunting.

The incident takes place amid border tensions, sparked by the murders last month of five members of a Tajik family in a Tajik village located on disputed territory. Locals claim the murders were committed by ethnic Kyrgyz. A joint Tajik-Kyrgyz investigative group has been looking into the incident.

Many sections of the borders between the Central Asian states remain in dispute following the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991.