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5 Killed by Macedonian Police in Skopje - 2001-08-08

Macedonian police have killed five suspected ethnic Albanian guerrillas in a raid in the capital, Skopje early Tuesday. The incident has cast a shadow over the planned resumption of peace talks that hit a major snag on Monday.

Interior Minister Ljube Boskovski says five ethnic Albanians were killed and five others arrested during an anti-terrorist operation by Macedonian police.

A house and a mosque were raided in the action in a predominantly ethnic Albanian neighborhood on the north side of Skopje.

Mr. Boskovski said the dawn raid was prompted by information that a terrorist group was preparing an attack on the capital.

The incident cast a pall over the expected resumption of talks on a political deal to resolve Macedonia's six months of ethnic conflict.

One participant in the talks said political leaders were still waiting for the discussions to begin.

NATO has pledged to deploy a force of 3,000 troops in Macedonia to disarm the insurgents when a final agreement is reached.