Days of Insecurity in Kumanovo

A side street in Kumanovo’s neighborhood where police undertake action against, as they say, armed group.

Part of Kumanovo residents, a town in Macedonia close to the border with Serbia, live with usual Saturday activities, while part of the residents are in their homes close to the ares where police undertake police action against armed group. Ministry of Interior confirmed police action that endures even in the night hours.

Three police officers died in today’s activities, Dnevnik reports having confirmation of next of kin. Zarko Kuzmanovski (32) of Tetovo village Brvenica, Sasho Samoilovski (32) of Tetovo and Nenad Serafimovski (28) of Gostivar village Zubovce.

On the news conference on Saturday, Minister of Interior, Gordana Jankulovska said confirmed the death of three police officers explaining two more died in today’s operation. Police continues with the action and says no civilian suffered in the action.

Jankulovska said, six police officers were wounded, the Radio Free Europe on Macedonian language reported. As Jankulovska explained, the attackers were of Macedonia and of one of the neighboring state, not specifying which one.

In a statement published on MOI’s website, MOI says, police started an action to disperse a larger armed terrorist group with a goal to attack state institutions.” MOI located the group inside the several houses in a neighborhood close to the center of Kumanovo. Police started the action at about 5:00 a.m. and due to the specific of the small side streets had to advance tactically, MOI said.

TV crew of AlsatM interviews women, residents of the neighborhood in Kumanovo.

On the field, police members secures access to the side streets, do not allow residents biggest movement in the neighborhood “Tode Mendol.” More police presence I could spot inside the side streets where police presence is with armored vehicles and special police forces deployed close to the houses. While in Kumanovo, I could hear exchange of fires and sounds of shots.

Smoke rose from a house roof and the sounds of the shots arrived of that direction, probably where police tried to disperse the group.

In part of the side streets close to the police movement, residents of this neighborhood in Kumanovo, was quiet and the doors of the houses were closed. Some of the residents, especially men watched and commented with rare media crews in the streets that police is close to their houses.

Mayor of Kumanovo Zoran Damjanovski confirmed the action of police and said “the group is not of that neighborhood.” For Damjanovski, the group has not support of the local population. While officials did not confirm yet the number of injured, photographs of local hospitals witness the interventions on injured.

Police vehicles and members of police deployed inside the neighborhood in Kumanovo where police takes an action.

Media in Skopje published on Saturday morning about the sounds of the shots in Kumanovo area.

Unofficial information says that residents of Kumanovo can hear from late last night to early morning on Saturday sounds of gun shot. Rare videos released on YouTube show smoke on a hill behind the houses in Kumanovo area. At about 5:00 a.m. reportedly people could still hear the shootings. Latest information is that is quiet in Kumanovo. Skopje residents could hear occasional flights of helicopters since the morning. The reports on armed group are unofficial, as well the reports about the injured policemen.

Football game for tomorrow between clubs “Skendija” and “Vardar” is canceled. Political opponents to the government blamed the political discrepancies about the destabilization of the situation. Current President Gorgje Ivanov canceled official visit to Moscow for the VE Day parade. In addition, tensions between opposition and the government mounts with each day verbal exchanges about the situation in the country.

Related links:

Local media in Kumanovo write that reportedly Ministry of Interior undertook police intervention in one of the neighborhood in Kumanovo to seize the weapons and found resistance coming from a house in that neighborhood. Police neither confirms, or denies information about police action and reported injured.
MOI’s video as police evacuate part of civil population close to the neighborhood in Kumanovo. Part of residents alone left the area of the action. reports that situation in Kumanovo calms down with a photography of transfer of injured policeman.

Originally published at on May 9, 2015.