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Tajik Mobile Forces

The Mobile Force of Tajik Army was founded in 2005 without increase in a total strength of the country’s armed forces. The CIA World Factbook reports the Tajik military (as of 2010) consisted of Ground Forces, Air and Air Defense Forces, and Mobile Forces. Tajik sources report the armed forces consist of Land Forces, Mobile Forces, Air and Air Defense Forces, Presidential National Guard, and Security Forces (internal and border troops). The Tajik Mobile Forces are apparently the counterpart to the Russian Airborne Troops, with whom they exercise, a formation which is also distinct from the Russian Ground Forces. Although both Tajik and Russian formations are sometimes called Paratroopers, they do not jump out of perfectly good airplanes. They are both in American parlance "air mobile" - light infantry that can deploy with helicopters.

By 2002 Tajikistan was expanding its cooperation with many remote and neighbouring countries in the military and technical spheres. Special priority in military cooperation was accorded to France. In February 2002, Paratroopers from the [Tajik] Defence Ministry's military unit No 06870 and French special-purpose troops, who were temporarily deployed at Dushanbe airport, held shooting exercises using small arms. The exercises were organized as part of the plans for military cooperation between Tajikistan and France. After the exercises, Tajik paratroopers and the French military exchanged experiences, which helped to strengthen military cooperation and improve servicemen's knowledge and skills.

A three-day joint counterterrorism exercise for Tajik and Chinese servicemen, dubbed Interaction 2006, was launched in southern Tajikistan 14 September 2006. The exercise focused on international terrorism, dealing with crises, and strengthening each country's capacity to handle new challenges and threats. The purpose of the exercise being held at the Mumirak military range in the Khatlon province was to rehearse cooperation and interaction in counterterrorism operations. The exercise involves a sub-unit of paratroopers of Tajik Mobile Forces and a company of Special Force of Chinese National Army supported by combined artillery battalion and Tajik combat helicopters and aircraft. The war game was conducted in two stages. The first stage include preparation for interaction between the forces of the two countries. The latter stage included joint counterterrorism operations at the Mumirak military range on September 23. The exercise scenario was based on discovering and eliminating terrorist groups.

The CIS Collective Security Treaty (CST) was formed in 1992 with Armenia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan, which were joined by Azerbaijan, Georgia, and Belarus the following year. In October 2002, the group was renamed as the CSTO. An agreement to create the Collective Rapid Reaction Force was reached by five of the seven members on February 4, 2009, with plans finalized on June 14, 2009. The agreement called on each of the CSTO member nations to provide one battalion for the formation of the force. The force is intended to be used to respond to the broadest range of threats and challenges.

On 04 August 2007, Tajikistan’s Ministry of Defense (MoD) organizes special activities to mark a Paratroopers’ Day. A demonstration war game, involving sub-units of Tajik Mobile Forces, will be conducted on this occasion at the Fakhrobod training ground, some 30 kilometers south of Dushanbe. The war game scenario is based on paratroopers attacking terrorists’ camp and releasing hostages. Senior representatives from the MoD, government bodies as well as veterans of the Afghan war 1979-1989 attended the demonstration war game in Fakhrobod.

Annual training for Tajik paratroopers in 2009 was successfully completed at the Fakhrobod training grounds from September 22 to September 27 due to personnel of the French Air Force involved an aircraft of the French Air Force contingent deployed at the Dushanbe airport. The training on parachute jumping was conducted by seven instructors from the French Air Force. Some 50 paratroopers of mobile forces of the Ministry of Defense and the National Guards of Tajikistan were trained.

In late 2011 French parachute instructors conducted paratroop training for cadets from the Tajik Military Institute and servicemen from National Guard and Mobile Forces. Seven French paratroopers from the Parachute Training Center in French city Orleans conducted the training, which lasted from September 27 to October 2. Forty-nine Tajik servicemen participated in the training and they made four parachute jumps each from the French military transport C-160. France has contributed to the training of Tajik paratroopers for seven years.

On 27 September 2011 Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan signed the plan of bilateral military cooperation for 2012 on the sidelines of the ongoing joint military exercise. Commander of the Mobile Forces of the Armed Forces of Tajikistan, Major-General Latif Fayziyev, is in overall command of the ongoing war game. A joint military exercise for subunits of the armed forces of Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan as well as special police unit of Tajikistan was launched in the Tajik eastern Jirgatol district, Rasht Valley. The exercise scenario is based on surrounding a group of international terrorists in one of mountain gorges in Jirgatol on the Tajik-Kyrgyz border. Another large group of international terrorists attempts to penetrate into Tajikistan from neighboring country to help the surrounded terrorists. Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan launch a joint operation to annihilate the terrorists. The exercise that involved more than 600 servicemen of the mobile, land and border forces of the Tajik MoD and special police unit of the Interior Ministry’s office for Rasht Valley as well as the operational group of Kyrgyzstan’s Ministry of Defense along with armored vehicles and combat helicopters closed with a final phase featuring live-fire missions.

Tajik servicemen participated in an anti-terror drill for the Collective Security Treaty Organization’s (CSTO) Collective Rapid Reaction Force, dubbed Rubezh-2012 (Frontier-2012), which kicked off at the Chebarkul training ground, Russia’s Chelyabinsk oblast on 06 August 2012. Tajikistan was represented in the exercise by the mountain company of the Mobile Forces and the Operational Group of the Ministry of Defense. The exercise, involving more than 1,000 military personnel from Russia, Kyrgyzstan along with armored vehicles, combat helicopters and ground-support aircraft, will closed on 10 August 2012 with a final phase featuring live-fire missions.



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