Tajikistan. The contradictions of the civil war in the 1990s again brought to mind and led to battles with many casualties in southeast Tajikistan.
When a regional security chief was killed in July, the regime sent special forces to the province of Gorno-Badachshan, on the border with Afghanistan. The action was directed at local warlord Tolib Ajombekov, who fought against the government in the civil war in the 1990s.
The residents of Gorno-Badachshan stood on the side of the rebels in the civil war and have remained in opposition to the Tajikist regime. The military operation was a new attempt to take control of the hard-to-reach area of the Pamir Mountains where former rebel groups are located, including Afghanistan.
Data on the number of casualties fell apart, between about 50 and 70. After a week of fighting and negotiations, and under threat of a major military offensive, the rebels were reported to have laid down weapons since being promised amnesty.
- AbbreviationFinder.org: Provides most commonly used acronyms and abbreviations for Tajikistan. Also includes location map, major cities, and country overview.
In August, rebel leader Imomnazar Imomnazarov was killed, leading to protests in Gorno-Badachshan’s capital Chorogh. When protesters tried to storm a government building, police opened fire.
In August, the Supreme Court opened a lawsuit against 15 people accused of being members of a banned Islamist organization, Jamaat Ansarullah. Ten similar groups have been banned.
After negotiations during the year, the Tajikistan and Russian Federation agreed in October to extend the agreement for the Russian military base in the country by 30 years. The base is seen as a defense against militant Islamist groups and drug smuggling. In exchange for granting the base, Tajikistan receives financial assistance and President Emomali Rachmon’s long-lived regime receives political support.
In October, the Ministry of Education declared that the country’s universities would prohibit students from participating in seminars, courses and other collections organized by foreign and international groups.
The human rights group Amparo was banned in October by a court decision. Amparo was run by young lawyers investigating allegations of abuse and torture and guarding the rights of soldiers. According to Human Rights Watch, the decision was an attempt to silence critical voices and a major step backward for human rights in Tajikistan.
TeliaSonera’s subsidiary Tcell in Tajikistan was among the Internet operators who, on the orders of the Tajikist regime, blocked users’ access to certain news pages. The Tajik National Assembly in Sweden accused TeliaSonera of participating in the violation of Tajikistan’s right to free and independent information.
In November, ISPs were ordered to block Facebook for their users. Authorities claimed that the decision was made at the public’s request and that many complained about “dirt and slander” in social media.
In December, 131 websites were blocked, including Twitter. Opposition leader Umarali Quvatov, who formed the Group 24 opposition movement, was arrested at the end of the year in Dubai at the request of the Tajik regime. He was charged with fraud.
According to countryaah, the population of Tajikistan in 2012 was 8,453,917, ranking number 98 in the world. The population growth rate was 2.350% yearly, and the population density was 60.4032 people per km2.
Autonomous Republic of Uzbekistan since 1924, Tajikistan became a federated republic of the USSR in 1929. Independent since December 1991, the country was the scene of a civil war that saw the forces of the central government (pro-Russian and expression above all of the population of the northern regions) to those of the opposition (liberal and Islamic fundamentalist), mainly supported by the population of the southern and eastern regions. The presidential elections of November 1994 confirmed IS Rahmonov, head of state since 1992, to the presidency of the Republic; at the same time a new presidential constitution was approved by referendum. Tajikistan has struggled to initiate a modernization process and has remained closely linked to Russia both economically and militarily. In 1997 Rahmonov signed a peace agreement with the rebels in Moscow, but the armed clashes between fundamentalist Islamic forces opposed to the agreement, militarily supported by the Afghan Taliban, and the government forces continued in various parts of the country. Rahmonov’s re-election in 1999, 2006 and 2013 and the disputed legislative elections of 2000, 2005, 2010, 2015 and 2020, won by pro-presidential parties, have contributed to maintaining instability in the country. Despite this, in May 2016, through a referendum, 94.5% of the population expressed their opinion in favor of an amendment to the Constitution that would allow the president in office to be re-elected without time restrictions; the consultations held in October 2020 reconfirmed Rahmonov for a new mandate with over 90% of the votes.