BISHKEK. The Kyrgyz Interior Ministry says two Uzbek border guards crossed into Kyrgyz territory and threatened the driver and passengers of a bus by firing an automatic rifle.
The ministry said today that the incident occurred late Friday, February 14. It said the guards crossed nearly one kilometer into the southern Kadamjai region of Kyrgyzstan and asked a bus driver for identification.
The report said the driver refused because he was on Kyrgyz territory and one of the Uzbek border guards fired his automatic rifle as a warning. Kyrgyz officials said the two unidentified guards were then taken back into Uzbekistan by their commanders.
Kyrgyz authorities have sent a note of protest to Uzbek border guard commanders and asked for the punishment of the guards. The Kyrgyz Border Guard Service told RFE/RL today that Uzbekistan's Kuvasai border guard department is now investigating the case.
In the meantime, the Kyrgyz Ambassador to Tashkent, Ulukbek Chynaliev gave a press conference yesterday in the Uzbek capital in connection with the 10th anniversary of establishment of diplomatic relations between the two countries. About 97 agreements were signed between two neighbors during the decade. However, both sides are not satisfied with the current level of economic cooperation. Chynaliev noted that they have to use a lot of potential. He also said that a project of the Chinese-Kyrgyz-Uzbek railway is being developed now.
Compiled and translated by Tyntchtykbek Tchoroev and edited by Fred Woelfel in Prague