Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan agree not to use drones in border areas
Kyrgyzstan said Wednesday it had reached an agreement with Tajikistan not to use drones over their common border, in a rare deal between the historic rivals.
Clashes regularly erupt between the two Central Asian countries due to disputes over border demarcation and access to water.
The heads of Kyrgyzstan’s southern Batken province and Tajikistan’s northern Sughd province agreed not to use drones in the border areas, said a statement from the Kyrgyz president’s envoy in the Batken province.
The heads of the two regions also discussed maintaining stability on the border and ensuring public safety, among other issues, the statement said.
Around 100 people died in armed fighting in September 2022, the latest escalation of violence between the two mountainous countries.
Kyrgyzstan said the two sides had also agreed for border villages to solve issues of irrigation “between themselves.”
The Tajik side, in a statement from the regional administration of Sughd, noted the need for the joint use of water resources, but did not mention the agreement on drones.
Border disputes have dogged the former Soviet republics through their three decades of independence. Part of their 970-kilometer (600-mile) border is still to be demarcated.
The result has been constant tension over access to transport routes and resources, particularly over water in farming regions.
The two countries are members of the Moscow-led Collective Security Treaty Organisation.