ISSN 2330-717X

Macedonia Police Arrest 20 For Skopje Murders

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Macedonia’s Interior Minister announced that police had arrested 20 radical Islamists on Tuesday in an operation in several villages around the capital in connection with the murders of five men in Skopje on April 12.

“The arrested men are radical Islamists who have been fighting in Afghanistan and Pakistan against NATO and they will be charged with terrorism,” Gordana Jankulovski said.

Police said the motives of the men, some of whom were Macedonian nationals, was to spread fear in the country.

About 26 sites were searched and a large quantity of weapons was found, they added.

The bodies of Filip Slavkovski, Aleksandar Nakjevski, Cvetanco Acevski and Kire Trickovski, all aged between 18 and 20, were discovered on April 12 near Zelezarsko Ezero on the northern outskirts of the capital, a popular fishing destination. All had gunshot wounds.

Eyewitnesses said they were found by a local fisherman and the victims were believed to be fishermen too. The bodies had been lined up and appeared to have been executed with firearms. Two cars were found in the vicinity with open doors.

The news of the killings raised tensions in the ethnically divided country between Macedonians and Albanians.

Balkan Insight

Balkan Insight

The Balkan Insight (fornerkt the Balkin Investigative Reporting Network, BIRN) is a close group of editors and trainers that enables journalists in the region to produce in-depth analytical and investigative journalism on complex political, economic and social themes. BIRN emerged from the Balkan programme of the Institute for War & Peace Reporting, IWPR, in 2005. The original IWPR Balkans team was mandated to localise that programme and make it sustainable, in light of changing realities in the region and the maturity of the IWPR intervention. Since then, its work in publishing, media training and public debate activities has become synonymous with quality, reliability and impartiality. A fully-independent and local network, it is now developing as an efficient and self-sustainable regional institution to enhance the capacity for journalism that pushes for public debate on European-oriented political and economic reform.

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