Bishkek and Tashkent with a new power to inflate the conflict over the disputed reservoir, which de jure belongs to Uzbeks, and de facto — Kyrgyzstan. To resolve the dispute of the two republics are not taken, even Russia and China. However, before the war will not come, as in both republics, concerning the soon to be elections, and who knows how they will be affected by the fighting, said the expert, “MK”.
photo: Evgeny Semenov
The aggravation of tension in the day when it was officially announced the death of Uzbek President Islam Karimov. 2 Sep near Orto-Tokoy reservoir, the water which flows into Uzbekistan, there was an Uzbek armored vehicles, and the sky began to patrol military helicopters. Kyrgyzstan has promised that in case of brute force, Bishkek will react quickly and harshly. However, further words business has not moved, as in Kyrgyzstan believe that Tashkent is conducting military exercises, and does not infringe on the territorial integrity of a neighbor. The President of Kyrgyzstan Almazbek Atambayev did not attend the funeral of his Uzbek counterpart Islam Karimov.
The reservoir was built between 1941 and 1956, the budget of the Uzbek SSR, therefore, the modern independent Republic considers as its object. But for the arid region of any source of life-giving water is too important resource. Therefore, Kyrgyzstan is confident that once the Soviet Union all had in common, it’s not who paid for what, and where is now the reservoir in the Naryn region of Kyrgyzstan.
Until recently, the protection of the object provided 200 Uzbek soldiers. However, in March of this year Kyrgyz special forces besieged the Uzbek village of URTA-Tukay, located on the shore of the reservoir. Since no one can enter or exit from the territory of the settlement, the locals can’t get food and medical care. Bishkek is refusing to provide them with a humanitarian corridor and persuades to take the citizenship of Kyrgyzstan. In turn, the Tashkent have not yet been made of the attempts to relieve the town. He may have felt his power, in mid-August, Kyrgyzstan went even further and completely expelled the Uzbek military from the reservoir, taking one of them prisoner (detained for illegally crossing the border).
This Uzbekistan could not and instead of the reservoir by several dozen soldiers occupied the disputed mountain Ungar-Too, which is a strategically important height for the shelling of neighborhoods. There is also Kyrgyz radio relay station “Kerben”, providing Aksy, Chatkal and alabukinskiy areas of Kyrgyzstan Internet, radio, TV and telephone. Four employees of the facility were detained, and Tashkent said that they would release them only in the case that Bishkek will release previously arrested Uzbek strongman and will remove the cordon around the reservoir.
Freed Kyrgyz Uzbek, but not received in return the employees “Kerben”. Moreover, Uzbekistan began to strengthen its force in the disputed mountain. Now residents of Kyrgyzstan require their authorities as soon as possible to expel the invaders and to hold talks on border delimitation.
Note that the mountain and the reservoir is not the only disputed territory between the two States. The Uzbek-Kyrgyz border stretches for 1378 km, of which 324 km still raise questions. Chief editor of the journal “national strategy Issues” Azhdar KURTOV told “MK”, when and what the outcome of territorial disputes between Tashkent and Bishkek:
Now any escalation of the conflict will not, if it mean pulling up large numbers of troops and the withdrawal of ambassadors. Just shake the arms and disperse. Between Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan had a lot of such conflicts, and some of them have been more acute. It is very difficult to coordinate their border, as both countries, there are enclaves within each other, the disputed mineral deposits and even storage facilities. But now Tashkent and Bishkek is not profitable to exacerbate the conflict.
The Uzbeks will not retreat, as a new leader cannot begin his reign from the surrender site. They believe that if live on the territory of the Uzbeks or Uzbek there are objects, then it belongs to Uzbekistan, and there is nothing to discuss, but now Tashkent is interested in stability, which is necessary for the successful transfer of power to the new President.
Kyrgyzstan also to conduct the war, not enough resources, and, Moscow, Beijing, and Kazakhstan will not allow himself to be drawn into an armed conflict. Besides, Bishkek is also an election coming up and it will be difficult to predict how such a war would affect the positions of Atambayev.
– Will they be able to agree on boundary delimitation?
– According to one version, “damn the Bolsheviks” specially divided Central Asia so that its peoples were at odds with each other. But keep archival documents, which show that the Kremlin was quite difficult to find an ideal variant of carrying out of borders. First, each local ruler was trying to persuade Moscow in their favor, so he got as much land. Secondly, there is overlapping, one Uzbek village, and the other Kirghiz. Especially strongly it was showed to the Ferghana valley.
Now to agree on the delimitation of boundaries is very difficult, as all the talk about territorial concessions traditionally perceived very negatively. Disputes arise not only about the mountains with some buildings or reservoirs, they conflict even sand pits. With independence it’s been 25 years, but still most of the sites of the Uzbek-Kyrgyz border remain mined. Tashkent and Bishkek are in the SCO, which was created including border demarcation of China, Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan. Logically, the SCO could use their tools and experience to resolve disputes on the border of Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan, but this issue is so complex that it is not even put in the agenda.
And it’s not only the unwillingness of politicians to compromise, but in the poverty of both States, because if you discriminate, you need to relocate thousands of people living in the disputed territories. Tashkent and Bishkek do not have the money. But there is a so-called historic confrontation between the settled Uzbeks and nomadic Kyrgyz. The nationalist part of the political elite of Kyrgyzstan believes that the slightest concession would lead to the requirement for the creation of Uzbek autonomy… This is largely a far-fetched concern associated with a large number of fraud, but it also prevents boundary delimitation.