The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Kyrgyzstan has again advised that Kyrgyz nationals temporarily refrain from travelling to Tajikistan as allegedly there are still travel restrictions imposed by the Tajik side on citizens of Kyrgyzstan.

A statement, released by Kyrgyzstan’s MFA on March, says that according to information from the Kyrgyz Embassy [in Dushanbe],  the border control officers at Dushanbe International Airport deny nations of Kyrgyzstan entry.

This reportedly results in additional financial costs associated with the purchase of air tickets and waiting for the return flight in the transit zone.  

Recall, Kyrgyzstan’s Foreign Ministry released similar statement on December 22, 2022, advising  citizens of Kyrgyzstan “to temporarily refrain from traveling to Tajikistan or transit route to other countries via Tajikistan’s territory.”

The statement noted that recommendations have been published due to ongoing restrictions for citizens of Kyrgyzstan to enter Tajikistan. 

The authorities of Tajikistan have not commented on these statements.

It is to be noted that Kyrgyzstan has unilaterally closed its common border with Tajikistan after further border clashes that occurred on September 14-17, 2022.  Both sides reportedly lost over 100 people both military population and ordinary citizens in that incident.  During fierce armed confrontations, a lot of schools, mosques were destroyed in addition to the houses of civilians; administrative buildings were also attacked by fire.

The latest armed confrontation was the worst since April 2021, when over 50 citizens of both nations died during the armed hostilities. 

Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan have not yet resolved the border delineation problem.  Many border areas in Central Asia have been disputed since the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991.  The situation is particularly complicated near the numerous exclaves in the Fergana Valley, where the borders of Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, and Kyrgyzstan meet.

The border of Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan has been the scene of unrest repeatedly since the collapse of the former Soviet Union.