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Dushanbe, Tashkent At Odds Over Shooting Death Near Border

Tajik and Uzbek authorities have given contradictory explanations for the killing of a Tajik man on April 15 along the border between the Central Asian nations.

Tajikistan's Border Guard Service told RFE/RL on April 17 that Uzbek border guards illegally entered Tajik territory, fatally shot a Tajik man, and wounded another Tajik national.

Uzbekistan's State Border Protection Committee said earlier that Uzbek border guards had to fire shots in self-defense after three Tajik shepherds attacked them.

According to the Uzbek officials, the shooting took place on April 15 after the Tajik shepherds and their livestock had illegally gone 50 meters inside Uzbek territory.

About one-fifth of the 1,400-km Tajik-Uzbek border has not been delimited.

Violent incidents occur with some frequency along the borders of the former Soviet republics of Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, and Kyrgyzstan.