Publication: Monitor Volume: 2 Issue: 148

In Dushanbe yesterday, the pro-regime chairman of the Tajik academy of sciences and of the society for relations with Tajiks abroad, Muhammad Osimov, was assassinated by unidentified gunmen. The assassination recalls that of the rector of the medical university and another prominent doctor last May. All three were members of powerful Leninabad region clans, originally allied to the now dominant Kulyab clan but increasingly alienated by Kulyabi primacy in government and graft. In Moscow yesterday, Tajikistan’s former prime minister Abdumalik Abdulajonov appeared on Russian state television to declare himself prepared to resume a political role in Dushanbe along with two other former prime ministers. Abdulajonov obliquely condemned Kulyabi hegemony. (Interfax, Itar-Tass, Russian TV, July 29) His appearance opens the possibility that Moscow seeks to broaden the Tajik government it installed in 1992, and may be looking for groups eligible from its point of view to enter the government after the collapse of the talks with the armed opposition.

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