Uzbekistan terminates aviation agreement with Tajikistan


June 30, 2010, Stan Rogers


Uzbekistan has terminated an aviation agreement with Tajikistan, news media reported June 29. The decision might temporarily bar Tajik aircraft from Uzbek airspace.


Under the 1993 deal, Uzbek air traffic controllers guided planes over flying Uzbekistan to land in Tajikistan's Sogd Oblast. Tajik controllers guided planes over flying Tajikistan to land in Uzbekistan's Surkhandarya Oblast.


Under a temporary agreement from June 26, Uzbek and Tajik controllers now will take complete responsibility for guiding the landings of their respective countries' aircraft, Tajik Transport Ministry official Aziz Nabiyev said. Uzbekistan also wants Tajik aircraft to cease using Uzbek airspace when beginning their descent to land in Sogd Oblast.


Some Tajik lawmakers and observers likened the agreement's suspension to Uzbek impoundment of Tajik-bound rail freight, saying both actions are attempts by Uzbekistan to punish Tajikistan for proceeding with the Rogun dam construction project.


Uzbekistan also terminated a similar aviation pact with Kyrgyzstan.