DUSHANBE, February 22, 2010, Asia-Plus  -- Many residents of Tajikistan are concerned that intensification of activities of the Taliban in the Afghan province of Kunduz bordering southern Tajikistan may lead to the spillover of violence into Tajikistan.  The escalation of fighting in Kunduz may allegedly make the situation in the border tenser and provoke the Taliban to break through.

In the meantime, Tajik political scientist Doustmuhammad Doust consider that worsening of the situation in Kunduz cannot affect the situation in Tajikistan.  “Anyway, appropriate structures of the country must be ready for any turn of events,” the expert noted.

“However, there is probability that non-Afghan militants of Central Asian and Northern Caucasian origin may spill over into Tajikistan,” said Doust, “In case of necessity, Afghan militants may abandon weapons and merge with local population while it won''t be very difficult for Afghan police to identify militants of Central Asian and Northern Caucasian origin.  Therefore, in case of unfavorable outcome they will try to cross into the Tajik territory.”

Besides, some countries could promote spillover of Taliban militants into Tajikistan for aggravation of the political situation in the country, the expert added.  “Today, we have disagreements with some countries over a number of issues, in particular, the construction of the Roghun HPP,” Doust noted.

In the meantime, the Taliban, ousted from government by U.S.-backed Afghan forces after the September 11, 2001 attacks on the United States, has spread from its traditional heartland into once-safe Kunduz.  Some Afghan news agencies, referring to the Kunduz governor Mohammad Omar, report that Kunduz may become the “second front” of fight against the Taliban soon after the Helmand province, where Operation Moshtarak or "Together," the biggest NATO and Afghan offensive to date, has been ongoing since February 13.