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Latest Investigations from the Balkans

spike-in-special-merit-citizenships-raises-eyebrows-in-albania-09-19-2016
21 Sep 16

Spike in ‘Special Merit’ Citizenships Raises Eyebrows in Albania

The recent awarding of citizenship to six Kosovo politicians has triggered a debate over the Albanian President’s discretionary right to hand out these important privileges.

kosovo-mulls-giving-wesley-clark-major-stake-in-coal-09-12-2016
13 Sep 16

Kosovo Mulls Giving Wesley Clark Major Stake in Coal

Kosovo looks set to grant very extensive coal research licenses to a company chaired by retired US General Wesley Clark - which some deem a virtual monopoly.

montenegro-opens-weapons-supply-line-to-saudi-arabia-08-02-2016
03 Aug 16

Montenegro Opens Weapons Supply Line to Saudi Arabia

An arms broker who sold almost 300 tonnes of aging Yugoslav-era weapons and ammunition to Saudi Arabia says “It’s no concern of mine” if the Gulf kingdom later diverts them to Syria.

making-a-killing-the-1-2-billion-euros-arms-pipeline-to-middle-east-07-26-2016
27 Jul 16

Making a Killing: The 1.2 Billion Euro Arms Pipeline to Middle East

An unprecedented flow of weapons from Central and Eastern Europe is flooding the battlefields of the Middle East.

serbian-venue-linked-to-4bn-kazakh-banking-fraud-06-30-2016
30 Jun 16

Serbian Venue Linked to €4bn Kazakh Banking Fraud

Belgrade’s premier exhibition hall and its neighbouring four-star hotel are tangled up in one of the world’s biggest ever banking frauds, BIRN has learned.

contract-with-a-gangster-infamous-underworld-figure-hired-to-solve-property-dispute-06-15-2016
20 Jun 16

Albanian Businessman Mulls Cost of 'Gangster's Aid

Stymied by Albania’s ineffective court system for over a decade, a local businessman who turned to a reputed gangster to resolve a legal matter may have paid a steep price.

vucic-s-advisor-did-not-declare-assets-06-18-2016
18 Jun 16

Vucic's Advisor Did Not Declare Assets

Serbian Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic’s media advisor, Suzana Vasiljevic, has not declared her assets despite being legally required to do so as a public official, BIRN has learned. 

the-integrity-gap-albania-s-appeals-court-judges-asset-disclosures-raise-red-flags-06-16-2016
17 Jun 16

The Integrity Gap: Albania’s Appeals Court Judges Asset Disclosures Raise Red Flags

Nearly 80 per cent of Albania’s appeals court judges have apparent financial discrepancies and cannot justify their wealth in one or more years during their judicial careers according to a BIRN analysis of asset declarations.

company-linked-to-organized-crime-eyes-albanian-arms-factory-06-12-2016-1
13 Jun 16

Company Linked To Organized Crime Eyes Albanian Arms Factory

A Bulgarian company with ties to organized crime is in the process of securing a lease to a Communist-era weapons factory in the small Albanian town of Polican.

picturesque-eastern-serbian-town-reveals-extent-of-election-fraud-05-24-2016
25 May 16

Picturesque Eastern Serbian Town Reveals Extent of Election Fraud

Opposition parties and local observers have complained that recent elections in Serbia contained significant incidences of election fraud. A BIRN investigation found that those worries might be true in the small Serbian town of Zagubica.

macedonia-deputy-pm-kept-cypriot-firm-secret-05-20-2016
23 May 16

Macedonia Deputy PM Kept Cypriot Firm Secret

BIRN can reveal that Deputy Prime Minister Vladimir Peshevski is still director of an active company in Cyprus, contravening Macedonia’s law on conflicts of interest.

quarries-make-hellish-mess-of-albania-s-holy-mountain-05-16-2016
18 May 16

Quarries Make Hellish Mess of Albania’s Holy Mountain

Dozens of quarrying companies are devastating the pristine alpine pastures of Albania’s Mt Tomorri – a sacred site, which is supposed to be a national park enjoying state protection.

albania-ignoring-suspected-drug-baron-s-greek-arrest-warrant-05-16-2016
16 May 16

Albania ‘Ignoring’ Suspected Drug Baron’s Greek Arrest Warrant

Greek police documents seen by BIRN shows that Athens suspects an Albanian official and prominent businessman of heading a major drugs trafficking ring – however, Albanian police have yet to arrest him.

mysterious-terrorist-organisation-haunts-kosovo-judiciary-05-06-2016
07 May 16

Mysterious ‘Terrorist Organisation’ Haunts Kosovo Judiciary

Despite a Pristina court’s recent conviction of two Kosovo Albanians for joining an alleged terrorist group in Syria called ‘Harausham’, no Kosovo institution can provide proof of its existence.

kosovo-weapons-chief-accused-of-selling-police-guns-on-black-market-05-01-2016
02 May 16

Kosovo Weapons Chief Accused of Selling Police Guns on Black Market

A Ministry of Interior official responsible for tackling illegal gun ownership in Kosovo stands accused of moonlighting as a black-market arms dealer, it is alleged.