The Toxic Fergana Valley

[There are things that have been left half-buried in the Fergana Valley that are far more dangerous than either “Islamists” or ethnic tensions.]

Transboundary effects in FERGANA VALLEY

In the Ferghana Valley are three areas of Kyrgyzstan (Osh, Jalalabad, Batken), a region of Tajikistan (Sogdian) and three regions of Uzbekistan (Andijan, Namangan, Ferghana). All emissions and discharges of pollutants into the environment remain in the valley. We look at some of its trans-boundary environmental issues and, in particular, cross-border impact Sughd Tajikistan on the environment Ferghana Valley. How does the Valley

Fergana Valley – a deep and complex structurally intermountain trough ellipsoid. It is almost surrounded with high mountains (Kurama, Chatkal, Fergana, Alai and Turkestan ranges), and only in the west is a narrow passage in the Hungry Steppe. The peculiar position of the Fergana depression and its surrounding slopes of the highest ridges of Western Tien-Shan causes a pronounced vertical zoning, reflected in the hypsometry of relief. From south to north, from the crest of the Turkestan-Alai mountain system to the sandy massifs of Central Fergana, can be traced all the main types of terrain typical of mountainous areas bordering the lowland deserts. In this direction, a change of major soil types – from mountain-meadow alpine desert to the typical gray soils. On the surface of the device to clearly distinguish two zones – a flat (center), and Piedmont. The flat consists of a combination of gently rolling plains with well-defined alluvial fans, and closer to the middle – from the flat plains and foothills terraced alluvial plain, the valley of the Syr Darya presented and its components – the Naryn valley and Karadarya. Plains bordered strip of foothills consisting of piedmont rises and the small size and zaadyrnyh mezhadyrnyh basins. tailings from innocuous main problem of waste in Sughd Tajikistan is the presence of large tailings dumps radioactive waste and radioactive low-grade ores. By the volume of the accumulation of radioactive waste Sughd significantly ahead of other regions of the Fergana Valley. In the area also has a Anzob plant for the extraction and enrichment of mercury-antimony ores, two gold-mining factory. The danger lies in the fact that most of the tailings ponds are located near populated areas and near rivers. Many of the tailings have fencing and warning signs, so people in the immediate vicinity of the cattle graze, uses their building materials. Digmayskoy on hills (close to the Region and the city of Khujand Chkalovsk), 9 km from the Syr Darya have active tailings pond PA “Vostokredmet” radioactive waste and recovery of rare earth elements (vanadium), area of 70 hectares. The orange color of its surface from a height is clearly visible against the background of green irrigated fields and orchards in the Ferghana Valley. Digmayskoe tailing is the largest in the country and contains 20 million tons of waste processing uraniferous ore and about 5.7 million tons of waste processing of vanadium ore. On the surface radiation level reaches 150-250 mc / hr. Due to stoppage of production for processing of ore tailings surface has dried, and exposed waste, due to which the increased potential for wind transport of dust from radioactive elements in the surrounding area. To reduce the impact of wind-tailing was planted with reeds. Located near the town of Chkalovsk tailing “Cards 1-9”, the total area of 267 thousand square meters, covered with a neutral soil thickness of 0.5-1.0 m, which is insufficient to reduce the radiation risk, which are major sources of radon and the products of decay. Near the village is located Adrasman tailing former uranium ore production of 25 thousand sq.m. and the amount of 176 thousand cubic meters Digmayskoe uranium tailing dumps radioactive waste backfilled Adrasman GOK, but remediation has not been done. Because of the infiltration of storm water runoff are radioactive substances, as well as erosion of the sides of the tail under the influence of mud floods that occurred in 2004. The quantity of radiation in the diffuse field is 160 mR / hr. The difficult situation has developed in Taboshar. After the cessation of production of uraniferous ore in 1991 around a mining company and the city remained the tailings area 573 thousand square meters and a capacity of 7 million cubic meters In the field of waste exposure due to erosion and run-off background radiation exceeds 300 mR / hr. Volume dump low-grade ores is 33 million cubic meters Dump and open pit is not reclaimed. These materials are washed away by the wind and rain. Given this condition, the local population and authorities are deeply concerned, therefore, in Taboshar RESCA project in 2005-2006. conducted a survey of radio-ecological areas and identified the risks to public health. tailings radioactive waste in the city Gafurov (a suburb of Khujand) is the most well equipped. There is a protective layer of 2.5 meters, fencing and warning signs. Tailings are held regularly on measurements of background radiation. The tense situation in Anzob mining and processing plant on the river Yagnob, upper tributary of the river Zarafshan. Because of natural disasters in 1998 was put out of action 5-km slurry pipeline to the tailings line. In 1998-2002, the production of mercury-antimony concentrate at the plant has dropped significantly. In connection with the industrial growth in the years 2003-2006 was sharply question the safe storage of waste, since the time cards are overcrowded and unsafe. Another major mining venture on the river Zarafshan – gold mill in the village of Sogdiana. The basis used here is the technology of heap leaching application cyanides, which are highly toxic substances. However, their solution is neutralized with time. Other hazardous product in gold mining are the impurities of arsenic. Waste is stored in a specially designed tailings. Conservation authorities annually survey its safety. On the other gold mining companies in the region – SP “Aprelevka” – established the reuse of waste production. Dialogue is necessary not solved is the problem of cross-border industrial waste near the town of Bekabad (Uzbekistan). Waste dumps and 5-20 meters in height on at least 15 hectares of Bekabad steel plant located in the territory of Tajikistan. In the immediate vicinity is a large waste dump Bekabad. Conditions of storage of waste does not meet the environmental requirements of both countries, but the dialogue to solve the problem does not develop. Perhaps the greatest immediate threat to public health and the environment is Sughd Konibodom toxic waste landfill. Chemicals, biological agents (overdue or prohibited for use) are located near the district center, near the Great Fergana Canal and Kayrakkum reservoirs. Kanibodom on landfill from 1973 to 1990 were placed and mixed about 4 thousand tons of toxic waste. At the bottom of the landfill no waterproof layer and drainage, aquifers are not protected against the penetration of toxic chemicals, no fences, no comprehensive data on the amounts and types of hazardous substances. Also there are no observation wells down to the terrain, where the city Kanibadam key reservoirs. Not monitored environment. REHRA project were evaluated risks to human health and the environment and provides recommendations to address the problem. Household waste in Sughd are produced mainly in urban areas and stored at 17 sites. Every day in the city of Khujand produced 400-500 tons of waste to take out 26 garbage trucks (mainly tractors) on the already overcrowded landfills, located 17 kilometers from the city. Other significant sources of waste are the city of Isfara, Kanibadam, Istravshan with the volume of education 15 thousand tons of waste per year. Currently, an increasing number of containers of garbage collection. DOMULADZHANOV I., I. HODZHAMBERDIEV, M. Abdullaev, A. Teshabaev, N. Abdugani (Fergana Polytechnic Institute) Source: ECO-HR.4081 (Lev A. Fedorov) Bulletin “For chemical safety “, as well as illustrate the material on SREDA.UZ drawings of children of bidders Gorkomprirody Tashkent.


Ashgabat Mad at Moscow Again Over “Information War”

Turkish Planes Bomb Kurdish Rebel Bases in Iraq after Death of 26 Soldiers

Turkish Planes Bomb Kurdish Rebel Bases in Iraq after Death of 26 Soldiers

by Naharnet Newsdesk

Kurdish rebels killed 26 Turkish soldiers and injured 16 Wednesday in simultaneous attacks in southeast Turkey, marking one of the deadliest days for the army in its fight against the separatists since 1984.

The attacks by Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) rebels on Turkish troops occurred in eight locations in Cukurca and Yuksekova in Hakkari province near the Iraqi border, during the night from Tuesday to Wednesday, local security sources said.

The toll is the heaviest for the army since 1993, when the PKK killed 33 unarmed soldiers in Bingol province, in southeast Turkey. It could rise as at least one of the injured soldiers sustained life-threatening wounds, local health officials said.

Ankara launched a response to the attacks on the ground and in the air.

Several hundred Turkish soldiers have crossed into northern Iraq to hunt down PKK rebels, Kurdish news agency Firatnews said.

“Turkish soldiers from two separate points in Cukurca town crossed into south Kurdistan to follow (rebels),” said Firat news agency, which is known as a mouthpiece of the PKK.

“Turkish ground forces are attempting to cross the Iraqi border at Jeli, in the Hakkari region” of southeast Turkey, Dozdar Hammo, a PKK spokesman, told Agence France Pesse.

Turkish air force planes also bombed Kurdish rebel bases in Iraq in retaliation for the attacks, security sources said.

The air raids targeted Qandil region, the main rear base of the PKK, they added.

Turkish air forces have bombed rebel bases in Iraq several times in recent months, killing nearly 100 rebels, according to the Turkish general staff.

The Turkish parliament earlier this month renewed its mandate for the government to conduct ground incursions into Iraq.

Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has cancelled a trip to Kazakhstan because of the attacks, NTV said, while foreign minister Ahmet Davutoglu also scratched a visit to Serbia.

Erdogan, together with interior and defense ministers, intelligence undersecretary and military commanders held an urgent meeting at the prime minister’s office, NTV said.

“Turkey will not be shaken by terror… We will do whatever we can do to finish this,” President Abdullah Gul said in televised remarks.

“Those who believe they have shaken our state with those attacks… should know that the revenge for those attacks will be huge,” he said.

Clashes between the PKK and the army have escalated since the summer.

On Tuesday, a landmine explosion blamed on Kurdish rebels killed five police and three civilians in southeast Turkey.

The PKK, listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey and much of the international community, took up arms in Kurdish-majority southeastern Turkey in 1984, sparking a conflict that has claimed about 45,000 lives.

Indian Media Claims That ‘US will install sophisticated equipment, won’t enter Waziristan’

‘US will install sophisticated equipment, won’t enter Waziristan’

The US troops amassed at the Pakistan-Afghanistan border near the tribal North Waziristan Agency will not cross into Pakistan and will only install ‘sophisticated equipment’ on the Afghanistan side for surveillance of the Haqqani network, official sources said, citing intelligence reports.

“The intelligence agencies have told the government that the US forces do not plan to enter Pakistan and are at the border just to install sophisticated equipment to check the movement of the Haqqani network activists,” a senior government official told this newspaper.

“Keeping in view the latest meetings between the Pakistan and the US officials and the intelligence reports there is at least no fear of ground attack on North Waziristan,” said the official.

The US has deployed hundreds of troops along the Pakistan-Afghanistan border near the tribal North Waziristan Agency as fear grows of attack on the Haqqani network. The heavily armed US forces are backed by gunship helicopters. The relations between Pakistan and the US have deteriorated recently as the US is pressing Pakistan to launch a military operation in North Waziristan.

The Pakistan government and the military rejected the US demand and told them that a US operation in North Waziristan will be treated as attack on Pakistan. The US troops’ movement along the Pak-Afghan borderland at North Waziristan for the target identification of the Haqqani militants is an expression of the US mistrust on Pakistan’s security and intelligence set-up, analysts said.

Hundreds of the US troops deployed in Khost, a town in Afghanistan’s north-eastern Paktia province that borders Pakistan’s North Waziristan, during last couple of days, are tasked to identify the militant targets in the NWA areas that are to be taken on with drones and aerial strikes, according to intelligence sources.

Despite the exchange of ‘warm’ statements that stressed an enhanced Pak-US strategic cooperation after the tensions between the two states culminated to peak over the Haqqani row, the latest development concerning troop deployment comes as a vivid expression of the US mistrust on Pakistan’s intelligence and security agencies that had been assisting the US and Nato forces in hunting down the militants in Waziristan region.

The US reliance on its own troops for the target identification of the militants instead of exchanging information with Pakistan’s security and intelligence set-up is deciphered in the backdrop of the speculations from the US side that Pakistan was aiding Haqqanis and it would not cooperate with the US in hunting down the militant network.

Nato military spokesperson in Kabul, Brigadier General Carsten Jacobson, said that troop movement and deployment in Afghanistan was a “routine operational procedure”.

He declined to comment on the US troop deployment in Khost and refused to provide any further details on the issue. “Troop movement and deployment are part of routine operational procedure. That’s all I have to say.”

Pakistan Army’s media wing Inter-Services Public Relations has not responded to the troops’ amassment in Khost nor did it issue any official statement. On Monday, some tribal elders had reportedly crossed into the North Waziristan Agency border to hold secret meetings with the US and Nato military command in Afghanistan.

The tribal elders were reportedly taken into confidence by the US military officials that the troops would not enter Pakistani territory.