Uzbekistan Strengthens Border Against IS

Uzbekistan Strengthens Border Against ISUzbekistan Strengthens Border Against IS

Uzbekistan is strengthening border security after receiving information that the Islamic State militant group was planning to conduct terrorist attacks in the country this spring, u security service employee said.

“IS members were preparing a number of terror attacks for this spring in Uzbekistan, which is precisely why we are strengthening border security,” Alisher Khamdamov was quoted as saying Monday, Sputnik reported.

Khamdamov added that the national security service’s information on possible terror attacks was obtained from Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan (IMU) members and IS members detained in 2014.

“The detained Uzbek citizens underwent combat training in Pakistan in 2013 and then returned to Uzbekistan in 2014 to recruit youth into IS,” Khamdamov added.

The IMU was formed in 1991. Its headquarters are located in Taliban-controlled areas of northern Afghanistan. The attacks were supposed to take place ahead of the presidential election in Uzbekistan, scheduled for March 29.

In January, media reports said that IS allocated $70 million to destabilize the situation in Fergana Valley, a region that spreads across eastern Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan and Tajikistan, with help of Central Asian militants.