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BISHKEK, July 17 (Itar-Tass) – An exchange of gunfire involving soldiers of border guard services occurred Tuesday on the borderline between Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan, sources at the public relations department of the Kyrgyzstani State Border Service told Itar-Tass.
“The incident has left killed and wounded on both sides,” a source said.
It occurred in the Bulak-Bashi area of the Alabuk district in Kyrgyzstan’s southern Jalal-Abad region.
“Repair works were started on an automobile road linking the towns of Koktash and Bulak-Bashi,” the source said. “Kyrgyzstani border guards a conversation with the local residents in a bid to explain to them that the repair works are inadmissible, as the road crosses a section of the state border.
In spite of the warnings, the locals continued their repair efforts. A unit of Uzbekistani border guards arrived at the scene somewhat later and it also demanded that the works be stopped.
“However, the locals reacted to the demands of the Uzbek side rather aggressively and the border guards used gunfire as a result,” the source said. “The Kyrgyzstani border guards responded with gunfire, too.”
The incident claimed the life of a soldier of the Kyrgyzstani border service.
“Early reports indicate two citizens of Kyrgyzstan were injured and there are victims among Uzbekistani border guards as well,” the source said.
In the meantime, the chiefs of the two countries’ border services held emergency negotiations by telephone and reached agreement on a peaceful resolution of the aftermaths of the incident.