Taliban, weather, geopolitics: Afghanistan’s Kyrgyz wrestle with ‘stay or go?’
One day this April, when thick snow still covered the high-altitude Alai Valley, the small village of Taldy Suu saw a rare visit from a high-profile guest: President Sadyr Japarov.
Japarov had come to meet with ethnic Kyrgyz from Afghanistan’s Pamir Mountains who had, a few months earlier, moved into homes built for them by the Kyrgyz government. At the meeting, he talked about bringing the last thousand-odd Kyrgyz from Afghanistan by the end of the year.
“The hardships of the Pamir Kyrgyz have constantly disturbed my thoughts,” the president said during his April 4 visit. “I have wished to resettle them in their historic homeland for a long time, and now I mean to realize these intentions.”
The first group of Afghan Kyrgyz arrived in Kyrgyzstan in October 2017, after more than a decade of negotiations with…