Demining Programme Report: Tajikistan

Situation Report
Originally published
Tajikistan Country Report

Nov 96 - Following a recent assessment mission to Tajikistan, the demining requirements for this country have been defined. The implementing agencies will be DHA, UNHCR and NGOs and the aim of the programme at this point in time will be to reduce the risk to the civil population, UN personnel and aid workers exposed to mines and Unexploded Ordnance (UXO). It is expected that the programme will run from November 1996 to October 1997. Funding required is estimated at

US$ 736,425

Impact of Mines. Mines placed by the three key actors in the ongoing conflict Government, United Tajikistan Oppositions (UTO) and Russian Border Forces are affecting the humanitarian situation in the following manner:

(a) Inhibiting the return of refugees and IDP to their places of origin;

(b) Restricting access for humanitarian and development support to significant areas of the country;

(c) Causing civilian casualties/deaths;

(d) Denying or restricting access to key agricultural land in remote villages and towns coupled with stock losses is increasing dependency on Government and humanitarian aid support.

In order to reduce the risk to the civilian population, UN personnel and aid workers currently exposed to mines and UXO, a sustainable local Mine Action Centre (MAC) is to be established. The MAC must be capable of dealing with mine-related activities in conjunction with the Government and other entities by developing a detailed Mine Action Plan; advising the Government on demining matters; developing and implementing an information and management system; and to coordinate, support or develop mine awareness training.

After a political solution has been achieved, the additional objectives for a full-blown programme will be developed.



6 August 96 - The team in Vanj succeeded in defusing a tense situatio between the Russian Border Force (RBF) and the locals who accussed the RBF of firing mortar close to their village and sowing anti-personnel mines in the hills above their village. A meeting was arranged between the RBF and the locals in which the RBF promised to stop firing and to clear mines. (Source: UN)

1 Aug 96 - The Russian Border Forces (RBF) reported that a group of 30 armed people were observed in the process of lifting anti-personnel mines in the Pianj region. The RBF opened fire with mortar and the group fled towards Afghan territory. (Source: UN/DPKO)

23 July 96 - The UNMOT team in Childara was again prevented in proceeding towards Tavildara at the Labi Jar checkpoint. Mine on the road were given as a reason, this is not withstanding the team observed severalmilitary vehicles using the road. The team was told to try again on 24 July as prsently the roads were being cleared of mine. The team in Kalaikhumb was given the same explanations as to why they were not allowed to conduct their patrol. (Source: UN/DPKO)

18 April 96 - UNMOT was informed that the road leading south from Dashti Sher (approximately 11 kms east of Tavildara) towards the Khobutobot mountain pass would be mined and blocked by stone avalanches. (Source: UN/DPKO)

28 Mar 96 - The Chief of Internal Security explained to a UNMOT team that in the area of Sayod a number of mines existed and told the team that they had freedom of movement in the area, but at their own risk. (Source: UN/DPKO)

26 Mar 96 - The first Deputy of Field Commander Nizomov informed a UNMOT team that the road leading into the Kamarov Canyon, in the Garm/Karategin Valley, had been mined and that it was therefore not safe. (Source: UN/DPKO)

15 Jan 96 - Russian border forces report that opposition elements in Tajikistan have mined the main railroad from Temez to Dushanbe.


SITUATION - Jan. 96 - Tajikistan is mine affected. Land mines are being sown on the border with Afghanistan. The deteriorating internal political situation is the reason why mines have appeared now. Some of the mines have been laid indiscriminately. There are no figures available on the exact number of mines planted.

On 10 Apr. 95 the convoy transporting the Secretary General's Special Envoy to Tajikistan narrowly missed being caught in the explosion from a land mine blast near the Afghan border. The convoy was only 15 minutes behind a truck which was destroyed in the blast; the driver escaped injury. The land mine was located near a checkpoint on the River Pyanj, which separates Tajikistan from Afghanistan. UNMOT observers found two minefields near the border in February, consisting of 350 mines. They were apparently planted by the Tajikistan National Army in the summer of 1994. In Feb. 95 four Kazakh border guards were killed in Tajikistan as they laid mines to protect their positions from Tajik rebels.


The two minefields discovered by UNMOT in Feb. 95 were in the Garm vicinity. Mines have been laid near a checkpoint on the River Pyanj, near the border with Afghanistan.

On 27 March, the Chief of Internal Security explained to UNMOT that in the area of Sayod a number of mines existed.

Number of Mines


Demining Capacity



After breaking away from direct rule from Moscow after the 1991 coup, Tajikistan entered a period of political instability. A civil war in 1992 was won by remnants of the former ruling communists. A fragile coalition of liberals and Islamists seek the regime's ouster from exile in Afghanistan. In Apr. 95 oppsition fighters killed at least 29 Russian border guards stationed in Tajikistan as border guards and peacekeepers. The UN Security Council, alarmed by recent developments, urged restraint on both sides lest the strife erupt into broader regional unrest.

Inhumane Weapons Convention


Moratorium on the export of anti-personnel mines