Country Listing

Tajikistan Table of Contents


The Armed Forces

Tajikistan began assembling its own army in February 1993. The initial units were drawn from Popular Front forces active in the civil war. In the new army, those bands initially kept their distinct identity and their old commanders. This proved to be an impediment to the development of a cohesive military when some units resisted subordination to any higher authority, and casualties resulted from battles among units. Early in 1996, a rebellion by the First Battalion of Tajikistan's army, based in the Qurghonteppa area, brought about the replacement of the prime minister, a deputy prime minister, and the president's chief of staff to placate the rebel unit.

By the mid-1990s, Tajikistan's army numbered about 3,000 personnel. Russians, many of them veterans of the war in Afghanistan, made up almost three-quarters of the officer corps. The Russian Ministry of Defense continued to provide material assistance to Tajikistan's army. Through the mid-1990s, Tajikistan did not have an air force but relied instead on Russian air power; however, the Dushanbe government voiced the intention of purchasing some helicopters for military use and forming an air force squadron.

Data as of March 1996