On March 30, 2001 Turkmenistan's President Saparmurat Niyazov ordered his government to finish construction of the 1,700-kilometer border fence along Turkmenistan's border with Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan by the end of the year to prevent smuggling and illegal migration:
And here we have our border issues too. We have borders on this and on that side as with the Kazakhs. We have already started to built [sic] wire fences on the borders. You must provide all necessary support for this. Let there be crossing-points in specified areas. We are not doing this to separate ourselves from Uzbekistan or Kazakhstan but are doing so to maintain order on the border, to protect ourselves from violators and dishonest people and to prevent our goods from being smuggled. There are special crossing-points to prevent such things, and to ensure permitted and regulated border crossing on a legal basis. We have this in Koytendag [eastern Turkmenistan] as well as in other border districts of Lebap Region. Yesterday we started this [construction of wire fences] in Lebap, and earlier in Dashoguz. You must finish putting up this fence, all 1,700 km of it, by the end of this year. We need this to avoid any future dispute between us and to prevent any violators from entering. As we all are sovereign states, we cannot keep the borders open any more, for there could be trespassers from third countries.
Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan had serious "issues" regarding their mutual border until May 2004 when the Turkmen Foreign Ministry released a statement on May 31, 2004 saying disputes had been resolved.
- "TURKMENISTAN-UZBEKISTAN: Cross border movement remains problematic". Integrated Regional Information Networks. June 6, 2005. Retrieved 2007-06-07.
- Rein, Abraham (April 2, 2001). "Turkmenistan's Niyazov wants fence along the border". Eurasianet. Archived from the original on 2007-07-06. Retrieved 2007-06-07.
- Burke, Justin (April 2, 2001). "Niiyazov Calls For Fortifying Borders". Eurasianet. Archived from the original on 2007-07-06. Retrieved 2007-06-07.
- Dates Related to Elections, Officials, and Policy 2004. RadioFreeEurope/RadioLiberty Archived May 9, 2007, at the Wayback Machine.
- Learning to live with frontiers: New frontiers in Central Asia, May 2004
- Central Asia: A New Tajik-Uzbek Cycle Of Tension, November 2006
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