Another round in the brutal conflict between Albanian drug gangs in Macedonia took place yesterday, when Zeljkif Tusha was killed near the village of Blace, on the border with Kosovo. At the same time, three men set fire to the Baron cafe, in Skopje’s often lawless Cair district, which is a well known hangout for members of the gang known as Baron or Belanoca – after the village of Belanovce.
Tusha (56) is father of Gani Tusha, well known member of the Baron gang, who is suspected of involvement in the mafia style murders in Skopje in March and in Greece in July.

The targets here were members of the rival Grcec or Dukandzik drug gang, which was recently raided by the police, after years of failed attempts to enter their stronghold. Gani Tusha is currently in detention. Members of the Baron gang openly celebrated the arrest attempt against the Grcec gang, whose boss, Shevalj Muaremi, was given ample time to flee the country and relocate in Dubai.

We see that the gangs are going after the families of their rivals. In this case the target is the father of a high level gang member. This is traditional of the Muslim world, to conduct blood vendetta. We need higher level officials to get involved and put an end to this conflict, to get them to end the street shootouts, said former top police official Ljubomir Gjurcevski.

The ruling SDSM party, under whose watch this drug war developed, came out with an attempt to blame recently appointed interim Interior Minister Pance Toskoski for the murder, blaming the opposition party which holds the top position of the Ministry under an agreement meant to prevent the abuse of the police for political purposes ahead of the elections. VMRO-DPMNE responded by reminding SDSM that this is just the latest episode in a confrontation that was developing for years, under the watch of SDSM appointed Interior Minister Oliver Spasovski.

These clans were empowered by Spasovski, Zaev and Kovacevski. DUI and SDSM are dependent on the votes provided by these groups in several election cycles, VMRO responded.

Another damning piece of information was revealed by Telma TV just hours ahead of the murder near Skopje. The television informed that Zeljkif Tusha’s brother Naser, a police official, who found his body, is also manager of a company that imports coal for the state run ELEM/ESM energy company. This business expanded greatly in the past years, as under SDSM-DUI’s watch output at the Bitola coal mine collapsed to bare minimum levels. Macedonia is now forced to import coal from Albania, and Albanian mafia organizations have reportedly entered the business and are making huge profits