An armed group attacked special forces police Saturday in a town in northern Macedonia in a clash that killed
five eight police officers and injured more than 30, officials said, amid a political crisis that has raised concern about the stability of the Balkan nation.
AP (h/t Maksim) Interior minister Gordana Jankulovska said that the Muslim “terrorist group,” which had entered Macedonia from an unspecified neighboring country, planned to “use the current political situation to perform attacks on state institutions.”
Jankulovska said more than 20 members of the armed group had surrendered, but added that the police operation is still ongoing because other attackers have refused to give up.
Kumanovo is an ethnically mixed town located about 40 kilometers (25 miles) northeast of the capital Skopje, near the border with Kosovo and Serbia. The region was the center of hostilities between ethnic Albanian rebels and government forces during the ethnic conflict in 2001.
Ethnic Albanian Muslims, who make up about 30% of Macedonia’s 2 million people, took up arms in 2001 demanding more rights. The conflict ended after six months with a western-brokered peace deal that granted more rights to the minority group.
Wherever in the world there are Muslims, violence follows.
Apparently the terrorists in Macedonia had planned several attacks to destabilize the country by attacking state buildings and public areas. The 40 plus-strong group was targeting state institutions, sports events and shopping malls and was made up of well-trained fighters who had participated in attacks in the region and the Middle East. Read More