Russian President Vladimir Putin (C) and Tajikistani counterpart Emomali Rahmon (R) attend the Shanghai Cooperation Organization summit in Samarkand, Uzbekistan, on Friday. Moscow has called for a stop to the fighting between Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan. Photo by Kyrgyzstan Presidency Office/UPI | License Photo
Sept. 17 (UPI) -- A cease-fire between Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan held on Saturday despite sporadic shelling, a day after intense fighting between the former Soviet republics killed dozens, Western reports indicated.
Tajik border guards said the situation between the Central Asian neighbors was "relatively stable," Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty reported.
Tranquility was evident overnight Saturday and into the morning following an intense round of negotiations between security officials from Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan, according to Eurasianet, a U.S.-based independent news organization.
However, both sides accused the other of cease-fire violations. Taj border guards said Kyrgyz soldiers had violated it, while Kyrgyz border guards said a village was briefly shelled, the report said.
Both countries have clashed over a border dispute in the past week, with Kyrgyz border personnel accusing Tajik forces of using tanks, armored personnel carriers and mortars. Tajikistan has said that Kyrgyz forces bombed an outpost and seven villages.
Kyrgyzstan reported 24 deaths and 87 wounded. Its hospitals and clinics have treated 103 people, authorities said.
Tajik officials reported that 23 civilians and eight military personnel ad been killed since Sept. 14.
Russia called for a halt in the fighting on Friday, as both countries still host Russian military bases.
Fighting also broke out this week among two other former Soviet countries, Armenia and Azerbaijan. On Tuesday Azerbaijan targeted Armenian forces near the Nagorno-Karabakh region, which the two sides fought over as recently as 2020.