Borders Hardening throughout Central Asia in Anticipation of NATO Pullout

Kyrgyzstan’s Border Guards Service announced on May 9 that the United States will finance the construction of six facilities in Kyrgyzstan for use by Kyrgyz security forces. They will include a barracks, a command center for the Border Guards’ southern services and new checkpoints. The US Embassy confirmed the plans to build the facilities through CENTCOM, though no specifics were provided (paruskg.info, May 11).

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US Secretary of Defense Seeks to Shore Up Manas Air Base

Secretary Panetta visited Kyrgyzstan on March 13 to solidify that Bishkek honors its commitment to the agreement to host the U.S. military’s Transit Center at Manas International Airport outside Bishkek. The agreement lasts through mid-2014, though U.S. forces will need the base at least through the end of that year. Previous negotiations have been volatile, though each has ended in the U.S. paying a significantly higher price in exchange for business continuing as usual. Yet, given Moscow’s interest in avoiding a haphazard U.S. evacuation of Afghanistan, there is reason to believe that agreements over the Manas base will be extended as long as needed.

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