Clashes between Tajik and Kyrgyz soldiers broke out along the border overnight (local time) on Tuesday, September 17, resulting in the deaths of at least three Tajik soldiers and one Kyrgyz serviceman. At least 18 others were wounded on both sides as a result of the skirmishes. In separate statements, the Kyrgyz and Tajik security services accused the other side of starting illegal construction on the border between Tajikistan's northern Sughd province and Kyrgyzstan's western Batken province, a region also known as the Fergana Valley.
The Fergana Valley is home to several ethnic groups. Disputes over shared use of resources, such as irrigation water from rivers running through the area, have led to regular outbreaks of violence in the region since the fall of the USSR.
Individuals in the Fergana Valley should monitor developments, avoid all protests and demonstrations as a precaution, and adhere to instructions by local authorities and their home government.
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