Unexplained curfew enforced in Turkmen city near Afghan border


TURKMENABAT, Turkmenistan (TCA) — Residents of the eastern Turkmenistan city of Turkmenabat say local police have been enforcing an 11 p.m. curfew for the past several days without giving any explanation, RFE/RL’s Turkmen Service reports.

RFE/RL correspondents reported on August 15 that locals have been stopped by police after 10 p.m. and warned to be in their homes before 11. Anyone found on the streets after 11 p.m. is taken into custody.

Police then detain them for up to 18 hours, demanding that relatives come and identify them.

Detainees are required to provide a written explanation for their presence on the streets.

No official statements have been made to announce the curfew or explain the police actions.

Turkmenabat is the capital of Lebap province, which borders neighboring Afghanistan and Uzbekistan.

There have been media reports of shooting incidents along the Turkmen-Afghan border, allegedly involving Taliban militants and Turkmen border guards, since early 2015.

Meanwhile, Khaama Press Afghan news agency reported last Sunday that the Taliban militants had taken control of Dahana-e-Ghori district in the northern Baghlan province of Afghanistan.

A provincial council member speaking on the condition of anonymity confirmed the fall of the district.

The Taliban militants launched a coordinated attack on Dahana-e-Ghori district four days ago that led to heavy clashes in the area until the control of the district was fully taken on Sunday.

This comes as the Afghan forces cleared the district from the Taliban presence by launching a major operation three months ago.

The Taliban launched a major attack to take control of the strategic Kunduz city in April but the offensive was repulsed by the Afghan security forces. However, the security situation in several northern Afghan provinces, including the strategic Kunduz province, still remain unstable.

Sergey Kwan