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Tajikistan: Clashes Reported Between Rival Militias

Dushanbe, 16 August 1996 (RFE/RL) - Recurring clashes between rival militias have been reported in western Tajikistan.

RFE/RL's Tajikistan Broadcast Service has received reports this week of armed clashes and hostage-taking from that region.

One of the focal points of the clashes is Tursunzade, one of the sites of recent rebellions by local militia leaders against the government. The government fulfilled several demands of rebellion leaders, including changes in the government, and named one of the rebellion leaders, Habib Nasrulloen, to a top government post.

Two of Nasrulloen's sons were reported to be among those kidnapped and held for ransom this week. But they were freed by government security forces.

Authorities in Dushanbe have been meeting this week to try to ease tensions in western Tajikistan.