Republika has been informed that ballot stuffing is going on in a number of polling stations in Saraj, a large, majority ethnic Albanian village west of the capital Skopje.

According to our reports, local thugs have ordered the election observers out of the polling stations and began to stuff the boxes. This is going on despite the requirement that fingerprints are taken from all voters to prevent such abuse.

Ballot stuffing is common in Albanian majority areas and Saraj is a key region in the narrowly contested vote in Skopje.

The US Embassy apparently informed the Macedonian Interior Ministry that it received reports from a political party that over 80 armed men are preparing to cause incidents on election day. It’s not clear whether this is related to the report.