Erased video recordings of Gruevski’s escape through Albania

The video recordings requested by the Public Prosecutor’s Office from their colleagues in Albania to determine how former Prime Minister Nikola Gruevski had fled were erased. Chief Public Prosecutor Ljubomir Joveski announced yesterday that the recordings they requested were not handed over to them. The explanation of the Albanian authorities was that there was a lot of recorded material at the border crossing points and the system has automatically deleted it.

Joveski did not want to reveal whether the former prime minister could be seen on the video recordings throughout the capital, and whether the prosecutors spotted him in some of the recordings. He only said that he could not reveal details of the pre-investigation procedure that was being conducted, and that the assigned prosecutor analyzed those recordings. Joveski says that international aid is a complex operation and that it is exercised with special rules, but that our prosecution is doing everything in its power to get the recordings.

The latest information from the prosecution on the pre-trial procedure conducted by the Prosecutor’s Office for Organized Crime and Corruption was that after multiple interrogations, Albania informed them that they had provided the evidence, but that they should be taken over. Now the prosecutor says that Albania did not provide the necessary footage required by the Prosecution.

In the meantime, the prosecution is also analyzing the recordings that Montenegro sent, collecting other evidence, and witnesses will be summoned to help in the solving of the case. The recordings of security cameras on the roads, pay tolls, border crossings, and around the home of the former prime minister were obtained. The only thing that is known so far is that Gruevski left the border through an illegal passage.

However, there is still no confirmation whether Gruevski left Macedonia with diplomatic vehicles of Hungary. The purpose of the prosecution’s proceedings is to identify the eventual responsibility of the institutional triangle, the Ministry of the Interior, which did not follow the former prime minister, the Basic Court Skopje 1, which did not hand over the verdict for imprisonment to Gruevski because it was a weekend, and the Special Public Prosecutor’s Office, which did not demand detention for the former prime minister.

European Commissioner for Enlargement and Neighborhood Policy Johannes Hahn pointed his finger in the neighboring countries of Macedonia. In an interview with the state news agency, he said there was no evidence that neighboring countries were involved in Gruevski’s escape, but stressed “I’m not naive”.

“If you see the escape route, the road was not direct but across the region and this is some kind of regional cooperation that is neither helpful nor likeable. And I made this clear to all colleagues in the region,” said European Commissioner Hahn.

(FFS)