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DUSHANBE, August 24 (Itar-Tass) — Army special forces of the Tajikistani Defence Ministry have left Khorog (the administrative centre of the Gorno-Badakhshan autonomy), spokesman for the head of the Gorno-Badakhshan administration Rakhmon Gulzor told Itar-Tass by telephone on Friday. He stressed that the withdrawal of additional troops was one of the points of the agreement between the government and the Badakhshan leaders of the protest movement that was signed last night.
According to the representative of the Badakhshan administration, the military left the city in seven heavy-duty military vehicles, which was that recorded by observers. Additional army troops were dispatched to Khorog during a large-scale security operation conducted there by the government forces on July 24. The operation was conducted after the murder of the head of the regional department of the State Committee of National Security, General of the Tajikistani security services Abdullo Nazarov. Also, the issue of withdrawal of other special forces of security agencies is being decided.
After the murder of General Abdullo Nazarov on July 21, a special operation was carried out in Khorog with the participation of army units. Thirty militants were destroyed, and another 40 were captured. The government reported the loss of 17 troops. The society was spilt over the involvement of the army in the operation, and President Emomali Rakhmon announced moratorium on combat. The authorities began talks with the field commanders, initially through mediators, and then directly. In exchange for voluntary laying down their arms and turning in the persons suspected of assassinating the Tajikistani secret service General, the president guaranteed an amnesty. Emomali Rakhmon planned a visit to Khorog on August 25-26.
Meanwhile, according to sources in the headquarters of the government troops, servicemen of the Khorog motorised infantry battalion have returned to their home station.
The situation in the regional centre remains calm. The participants in a mass rally there on Thursday evening removed their tents in the city centre and went home. Employees of the public utilities companies are cleaning the central square. All local shops and the food market have opened - the city is returning to normal life.