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Uzbekistan: Government Fears Militant Attacks

Tashkent, 1 September 2000 (RFE/RL) - Uzbekistan's government forces today are on high alert for possible militant attacks as the country celebrates its 9th independence day. The holiday comes as Uzbekistan and neighboring Central Asian countries are fighting Islamic insurgents attempting to create an independent state. Uzbek officials said the documents of people entering and leaving the capital Tashkent will be thoroughly checked and shops in underground tunnels will be closed. Troops in neighboring Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan are also on high alert. In Tashkent, a series of concerts and events are scheduled. President Islam Karimov is due to make an address on the capital's main square.