Tense after the murder, Albanians urge the murderer to be punished
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co-author: Iskra Opetcheska
Gjorce Petrov is in indignation, anger and fear after yesterday’s murder of the high school graduate, 18-year-old Angel Petkovski. In the morning when “Inbox 7” visited the neighborhood, it was tense, but calm. The place in front of the European Eye Hospital where Petkovski was killed is today secured by the police. Police security was also at the gas station at the intersection where the road divides, to the exit of Skopje and the bridge that leads to the municipality of Saraj. Traffic was normal, with the exception of the entrance of Skopje, where police officers diverted vehicles entering the city via the bypass road to Pristina. Just a street below, adjacent to the municipal building on the “Heraclea” street where Angel lived, there is a river of tears, disbelief, shock, anger. In the home of the Petkovski family just two days ago Angel’s graduation was celebrated. “The child was quiet, I had never heard his mother to raise voice at him“, says Jovanka, Petkovski’s middle-aged neighbor, who, as she told us, moved in Skopje from Tetovo. Angel has a younger brother aged ten. He has not been told the ominous news yet.
Revolted shopkeepers: The murderer shall be punished, not all Albanians!
On the other side of the boulevard is a picture that speaks for last night’s chaos and riot – twenty buildings were demolished in the shopping center in Gorce Petrov, next to the green market. Smashed windows of butcher shops, exchange offices, completely destroyed bars and restaurants. There is glass everywhere in the park nearby. Shopkeepers say that after the murder they had closed their facilities, but later a group of young people came and smashed everything.
“Let the politicians ask themselves why this is happening, this is because of them“, said Sefedin Isaki for Inbox 7.
He owns the restaurant “SAS Planet”, which burned to the ground.
“The police did not let me come close, and they knew that my building was burning, 100 meters from here there is a fire station that did not react, I work for money, today I have nothing“, explains Isaki, adding that his guests were both Macedonians and Albanians.
According to the owner of the café “Te Koka”, the police knows well who did this and why.
“We are sorry for the murder, but the murderer shall be punished, not all Albanians. Let this be the last“, said Fatmir Bajrami, who points out that there have been incidents, but now was the worst.
No prosecutor at the inspection on the scene
Although the burning of shops happened last night, the owner of the café “Te Koka” Fatmir Bajrami says that the inspection team arrived on the scene about ten o’clock this morning.
“This morning the police came and took photos inside the shop. But the prosecutor was not there. The police only took photos, not footprints. I claim that the huge pot of flowers cannot be lifted and thrown by only one man. So I suspect that the incident involved more people“, said Bajrami. One of the two coffee grinders was also smashed in his shop.
The Public Prosecutor’s Office (PPO)Skopjevia a press release informed that the public prosecutor came to the scene where Angel Petkovski had been killed. We received no response to the question – whether the prosecution carried out an inspection into the shopping center in Gjorce Petrov?
Police have arrested 18 people, but the knife has not been found
The Ministry of Interior officially announced that the suspect was arrested for the murder that took place yesterday in the settlement Gjorce Petrov. It is a 19-year-old person known to the police for crimes committed in the past. According to the Ministry of Interior the murder was committed with a knife that has not yet been found. As Interior Minister Gordana Jankulovska said before reporters, the murder happened after a fight between the late Angel and murder suspect. The fight started when young Angel tried to take away the bike that the suspect had stolen from his garden. He and his father noticed the theft and went after the thieves. The police announced that they had arrested 18 people on charges of causing disorder and material damage during yesterday’s protests in the settlement Gjorce Petrov. Five of the detained are juveniles.
Appeals for coexistence
The Council and the Mayor of municipality Gjorce Petrov expressed sorrow for the murdered boy near the European Eye Clinic. Local authorities expressed concern about tensions and events after the tragic event and urged the competent authorities, especially the Ministry of Interior to take all measures, to, as it says “restore peace and security, and protection of life and citizens’ property”. The Council urges citizens to refrain from any violent activities.
The Council and the Mayor of municipality Gjorce Petrov, in cooperation with the Ministry of Interior, as it is said in the announcement, will impose additional measures of security. Meanwhile, there are calls for refrain from violence and inciting tensions. The messages from politicians and NGOs are unambiguous – the murderer to be punished for the murder of the high-school graduate Angel Petkovski and citizens to refrain from burst of interethnic relations.
Police video of the suspect
Macedonia remembers the case of young Mohammed A. Jashari, who died on April 5th 2011, saving his friend – Darko. 19-year-old Jashari, coming out of the school building in the yard of GUC “Zdravko Cvetkovski” saw that unknown and masked assailants beat his classmate Darko. He immediately approached to help but was attacked and after the death injuries he died.
On the social network Facebook initiative was launched to raise a monument to the young Jashari. The defendant P.M. was sentenced to thirteen years in prison. The angry Albanian shopkeepers whose buildings were demolished yesterday recalled this case and said: “We did not rise up then, the murderer was punished”.