1 - 7 October 2001

Skopje, October 8th, 2001

Security situation

Recurring incitements.
According to the report of the Ministry of Internal Affairs, on 1st of October, the police checkpoint at the cable railway and the one, near the police building in Tetovo have been attacked by extremists, who used automatic weapons.

A car bomb explodes.
On the 3rd of October, a vehicle exploded in front of the building of "Nova Makedonija" publishing company, killing the driver, an ethnic Albanian, and wounding two pedestrians. According to the police, the driver was a member of the NLA and there is a possibility that an explosive device had been used.

A petrol station attacked.
A tromblone bomb hit a petrol station, owned by an ethnic Albanian, on the 5th of October. It sustained only collateral damage.

The vehicles of Solana and Patten attacked with stones.
Approximately fifty citizens, standing in front of the Macedonian Parliament, threw stones at the vehicles of Solana and Patten, as they were arriving in Skopje.

Border patrolmen captured.
According to Macedonian media, three Macedonian border patrolmen were captured by the American KFOR troops, on Macedonian territory, while they were preventing a group of people to enter illegally in the region of Gosince watch-tower. After being held detained for three hours in Kosovo, the three border patrolmen were sent back. According to KFOR, the border patrolmen were captured because they penetrated 2.5 kilometers into Kosovo territory.

A possible attack on the Prime Minister prevented.
On the 5th of October, according to a police report, the police patrol had stopped a vehicle containing two ethnic Albanian Macedonian citizens and TNT explosive. By the way, the vehicle of Prime Minister Ljupco Georgievski was due to go on that route a few minutes later. The two suspects were arrested by the police.

Political situation

The relatives of the kidnapped persons meet Trajkovski and Andov.
On the 2nd October, the relatives of the kidnapped ethnic Macedonians met President of state Boris Trajkovski and President of the Parliament Stojan Andov.

The plan for returning security forces in the crisis regions approved.
A meeting of the National Security Council was held on the 3rd of October, on which the plan for returning security forces in the crisis regions was approved. The security forces were unable to enter the villages of Grusino, Orlance and Mojance on the 4th of October. According to the media, the security forces did not enter the villages because the area was mined. According to Chairman-in-Office of the OSCE, Mircea Geoana, the police is not allowed to enter the crisis regions without OSCE and EU monitors. A joint police force started to patrol the villages of Semsevo, Miletino, Blace, Volkovija and Stenche.

The incident in the Prime Minister's cabinet.
The American envoy for Macedonia, James Pardew, met Macedonian Prime Minister Ljubco Georgievski. According to the media, Pardew said that the return of security forces in the crisis regions is impossible at the moment, and certain conditions need to be fulfilled. Amnesty for the ex-members of the so-called NLA, as well as creation of an ethnically combined police force should be previously established. Pardew also stated that during his visit to Idrizovo, where the Albanian police officers are trained, he heard complaints that a number of Albanian females were sexually harassed by Macedonian policemen. After this, the Prime Minister ended the conversation.

The official outset of operation "Amber Fox".
On the 4th of October, the NATO-led operation in Macedonia, "Essential Harvest", for collecting weapons from the so-called NLA members, was replaced by operation "Amber Fox". The goal of this new operation is to support and protect the international monitors. Approximately 750 soldiers will take part in NATO-led operation "Amber Fox".

The West pressurizes the people who signed the agreement in Ohrid.
The EU High Representative for Common Foreign and Security Policy, Javier Solana, the European Commissioner for External Relations, Chris Patten, and OSCE Chairman-in-Office, Mircea Joana, arrived in Macedonia on the 4th of October in order to meet important statesmen. They ask for speeding-up the implementation of the constitutional amandments, they do not want the referendum to be carried out, and they demand a postponement of the entrance of Macedonian security forces in some villages without international monitors. He also raised the issue of amnesty.

The date for the Parliament session for amendment adoption determined.
On October 5, the President of Parliament, Stojan Andov, has announced that the third phase, in which the constitutional amendments will be adopted, will begin on Tuesday (09.10). President of State, Boris Trajkovski, put forward to the Parliament six amendments related to use of language, percentage of community members in public offices, the special mechanism for passing culture, education etc. laws, the legal officer as well as local administration.

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