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 Servicemen of Tajikistan's Panj Border Service detachment at the Somon border outpost ahead of patrolling the Tajik-Afghan border
Image: picture-alliance/dpa/N. Kalandarov

Tajikistan: 17 killed in border outpost attack

November 6, 2019

Twenty masked gunmen launched a failed attack on a Tajik outpost on the border with Uzbekistan. The rare attack was quashed when border forces launched a counter operation and killed most of the raiders.


At least 17 people were killed in an overnight raid by armed men on an outpost on the border between Tajikistan and Uzbekistan, Tajik authorities said on Wednesday.

"An armed group of 20 unknown masked individuals attacked a border outpost … using firearms," said Tajikistan's national security committee, according to Russian state-run news agency TASS.

Tajikistan's border forces said the assailants were members of the "Islamic State" (IS) militant group in Afghanistan.

At least five of the gunmen were detained and later provided critical intelligence during interrogations, authorities said.

Read more: Tajikistan regime targeting families of political activists

Map of Central Asia

Terror risk

Tajikistan, one of the poorest post-Soviet countries in Central Asia, has struggled to mitigate the risks of an ascendant IS in neighboring Afghanistan.

Last year, four Western tourists were killed during a bicycling tour of the country. The attack was claimed by IS. In May, 32 people were killed — 24 of them IS members — during a prison riot. The rioters had initially stabbed several guards and taken other prisoners hostage.

Read more: With 'Islamic State' in tatters, al-Qaida renews call for jihad

ls/aw (Reuters, AFP)

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