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Saturday, February 24, 2024

Tajik troops deployed on border as tension erupts with Taliban

The Russian Foreign Ministry claimed to have reports indicating troop deployments by Tajikistan and Afghanistan along the two countries’ shared border amid tensions with the Taliban, DW reported.

“We observe with concern growing tensions in Tajik-Afghan relations against the background of mutual harsh statements by the leaders of the two countries. Reports have appeared about the deployment of armed forces by both sides to the common border. According to information from the Taliban, tens of thousands of special forces units have been deployed in the bordering (northern) Afghan province Takhar alone,” said Foreign Ministry spokesman Alexei Zaytsev.

Moscow, said Zaytsev, calls on Dushanbe and Kabul “to search for mutually acceptable solutions” to de-escalate the current situation.

Tajik President Emomali Rahmon has refused to recognize the Taliban government, accusing the group of human rights abuses, the report said.

The Taliban leadership has harshly rejected such sentiments, demanding that Tajikistan stay out of Afghanistan’s domestic affairs.

On Thursday, long-time Tajik ruler Rahmon presided over a military parade near the border. The show of force followed a similar parade near another section of the border a day earlier.

Tajikistan is the only neighbouring country of Afghanistan which is emerging as the toughest critic of the Taliban.

Earlier, Tajik authorities have taken a different position and that has raised questions about why Rahmon and his government continue to make clear their strong opposition to a Taliban government in Afghanistan, Bruce Pannier wrote in the Qishloq Ovozi blog.

Pakistan, a long backer of the Taliban, clearly welcomed the group’s success in Afghanistan.

China, Iran, Uzbekistan, and Turkmenistan all conceded there was nothing they could do about Afghan internal politics and held out hope that some form of cooperation with the Taliban might be possible, he adds.

Tajikistan’s government is no doubt saying what many governments are thinking.

(The story has been published via a syndicated feed.)

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