A new incident occurred between residents of Tajik and Kyrgyz border areas after a group of Kyrgyz nationals accompanied by armed Kyrgyz border guards crossed into Tajik territory near the village of Lakkon in Isfara district.

Iqbol Ilyoszoda, a spokesman for the Isfara mayor’s office, says 200 residents of the village of Ravat in Kyrgyzstan’s Batken district accompanied by armed Kyrgyz border guards yesterday crossed into Tajik territory near the village of Lakkon.  According to him, Tajik border guards made a warning shot in the air.  

“The goal of residents of the Ravat village was to capture Tajik territory.  This territory is even not disputed and located in the territory of Tajikistan,” Ilyoszoda noted.  

He further added that ten days ago six armed Kyrgyz nationals illegally crossed into Tajik territory.  

“This is another provocation made by the Kyrgyz side and it impedes work of the interstate commission for delimitation and demarcation of the mutual border,” the spokesman stressed.

According to him, residents of the Kyrgyz village of Chontala are continuing to build homes and other infrastructure near the disputed parts of the border.  

Tajikistan’s border service refrained from commenting on the incident.  

Meanwhile, Kyrgyz media reports say the clash between residents of the Kyrgyz village of Karabak and Tajik border guards took place at the cemetery, which is located in Tajik territory some 150 meters from a conditional boundary line.  This area has not yet been inventoried but it is actually used by Kyrgyz nationals, according to 24.kg.  

Residents of the village of Karabak were reportedly making memorial prayers when Tajik border guards came.

“People demanded that the border guards leave the cemetery.  Border representatives of both countries came to the site to resolve the conflict,” 24.kg reported citing Kyrgyzstan’s border service.  

Negotiations are under way and explanatory work is being carried out among residents of border areas.  

Recall, the previous incident near a disputed segment of the Kyrgyz-Tajik border that increased tension in the volatile area took place on April 23. 

Kyrgyzstan’s State Border Service said on April 23 that a Tajik man in the village of Tojikon forcibly took an eight-year-old Kyrgyz boy from the adjacent Kyrgyz village of Ak-Sai into Tajik territory.

According to Kyrgyz officials, the boy was returned to Kyrgyz authorities in 30 minutes and at least 50 local Kyrgyz men and women demonstrated in Ak-Sai to voice anger over the incident.

Residents of the village of Tojikon said that the incident was the result of a new standoff between ethnic Kyrgyz and ethnic Tajiks living close to the disputed part of the border.

Residents of the Kyrgyz village reportedly blocked a road crossing the area and vandalized several Tajik vehicles, while Tajik men broke a window of a car with a Kyrgyz license plate.

The incident occurred weeks after two Tajik men were shot dead and several were injured in clashes between Kyrgyz and Tajiks after Kyrgyzstan restarted construction work on a controversial road.

Kyrgyzstan has been attempting to build a new stretch of road in the area for years, stopping and restarting construction work repeatedly while negotiators from the two countries try to reach a formal border delineation agreement.

Tajikistan insists the proposed path of the road cuts through disputed territory, and that the road should not be built until a deal is reached on the exact location of the border.

Almost half of the 976-kilometer border between Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan remains undelineated.