Friday, August 03, 2012 -
A blackout on internet and mobile communications imposed last week by Tajikistan’s government has dried up the flow of remittances to residents of the restive southeastern Tajik province of Gorno-Badakhshan, according to local media Friday.
The state communications agency in Dushanbe cut all communications lines to the city of Khorog and nearby districts on July 24 as government forces launched an assault on illegal armed groups in the mountainous area bordering Afghanistan.
The military operation was called to hunt down a number of suspects in the murder of a top security official in Khorog.
President Emomali Rahmon ordered a ceasefire later last week but has maintained the blackout of web sites.
Remittances from labor migrants working in Russia and other former Soviet countries are a vital component of the cash-strapped local economy and the main source of income for families that lack local work opportunities.
One of the conditions of the ceasefire that began July 29 was for fighters to hand in their weapons and receive immediate amnesty.
Around 300 weapons have been surrendered since then, according to the Ministry of Internal Affairs, Asia-Plus reported.
The weapons include Kalashnikovs, pistols, artillery shells, grenades, and other munitions, said a ministry spokesman.