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Russian Military Delegation Discusses Future Of Tajik Bases

  • RFE/RL's Tajik Service

Russian Deputy Defense Minister Anatoly Antonov

Russian Deputy Defense Minister Anatoly Antonov

Visiting Russian Deputy Defense Minister Anatoly Antonov was in Dushanbe on September 12 for a second straight day of talks with Tajik officials on the future of Russia's military bases in Tajikistan.

Dushanbe and Moscow have been conducting ongoing negotiations over a possible prolongation of Russia's 201st Motorized Rifle Division's deployment in Tajikistan beyond 2014.

After talks in Dushanbe with President Emomali Rahmon in April, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov stated that the lease for the three Russian-controlled garrisons in Tajikistan, which shares a poorly secured border with Afghanistan, would be extended by 49 years.

With approximately 7,500 troops, Russia's 201st Division uses three Tajik bases, located near Dushanbe and in the southern cities of Kulob and Qurghon-Teppa.

It is the largest deployment of Russian troops abroad.