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Islamic Renaissance Party of Tajikistan was about to conduct a coup

The Khovar state-run news agency has published an article claiming that the leader of the Islamic Renaissance Party of Tajikistan, Muhiddin Kabiri, was preparing a coup and former Deputy Defense Minister Abduhalim Nazarzoda was planned to be the perpetrator.The article entitled “There is no trust in Islamic extremists” alleged that the government’s decision to make peace with the opposition after the five-year Civil War which ended in June 1997 and to sign the inter-Tajik peace agreement was a mistake.

“The emergency situation in which local Islamists inspired by operations of the Taliban and ISIL boosted their activity and revealed their hidden intentions of a power grab and a coup was predictable and anticipated,” the article said.

The standoff between the police and Nazarzoda’s followers began in Tajikistan on September 4 with an attack on a police station. According to official reports, 29 persons – 9 law enforcement officers and 20 insurgents – have died by now. 0ne hundred and twenty insurgents have been detained, yet Nazarzoda is still hiding in Ramit Gorge, 150 kilometers east of Dushanbe.

The article said the confrontation “was preceded by numerous long-term ‘business trips’ of Islamic Renaissance Party leader Kabiri to foreign countries, and his long-term residence in in a foreign country where he set up his ideological headquarters.”

“The perpetrator, the military strategist and the direct supervisor of the operation was former Deputy Defense Minister Maj. Gen. Abduhalim Nazarzoda (field commander Khoji Halim), a member of the Islamic Renaissance Party and a follower of the United Tajik Opposition (UTO) integrated into the Armed Forces under the 1997 Peace Agreement,” the article claimed.

“Khoji Halim who headed the Tajik Defense Ministry’s logistics and supply department seized large quantities of weapons and ammunition from three military units to which he had direct access and took them away from Dushanbe in at least two KamAZ trucks. This arsenal was meant for arming Islamic Renaissance Party terrorist groups in every region of the republic,” the article said.

When it signed the peace agreement in the 1990s, the Tajik government trusted the United Tajik Opposition and thought they would be reliable followers but it was mistaken. That mistake backfired 20 years later and caused casualties.

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