TAJIK GOVERNMENT TROOPS STILL YIELDING GROUND TO OPPOSITION FORCES.

Publication: Monitor Volume: 4 Issue: 52

Tajikistan’s Presidential Guard Commander, Major-General Gafar Mirzoev, complained yesterday that opposition forces are pressuring and disarming government units with impunity in several areas of Tajikistan. Mirzoev listed a number of recent incidents of this nature in Komsomolabad and Obigarm districts east of Dushanbe, and Rogun and Nurek southeast of Dushanbe, where two major hydropower projects are located. According to Mirzoev, government troops — mostly of the Internal Affairs Ministry — usually allow themselves to be disarmed, or withdraw in order to avoid clashes. Last week, the government admitted that opposition detachments continue controlling the eastern outskirts of Dushanbe.

The government wants the political leadership of the opposition to order its "disciplined" units to join government forces and disarm the "undisciplined" opposition units. Dushanbe particularly seeks to involve the opposition leaders in a conflict with Mullo Abdullo, one of the opposition’s most effective commanders during the war. (Russian agencies, March 14 and 16) The recent incidents, as depicted by official Dushanbe, confirm that opposition forces are entrenched in important areas, and that the government’s writ keeps receding in territorial terms as the pacification process advances.

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