The event took place around 10 am in the village of Bularat in the Municipality of Dropull, Gjirokastra circuit, IBNA reports quoting a press release issued by police.
The victim is Konstantinos Katsifas, 35 years old, born and resident of Bularat, Gjirokastra.
Police said that the victim, who was wearing a military uniform, opened fire in the air and afterwards, on Special Forces. Meanwhile, pecial Forces reacted and 30 minutes later, killed him while chasing him on a mountain side near the village of Bularat.
Investigators from the Prosecution of Gjirokastra and Prosecution of Serious Crimes have launched an investigation on the scene.
The event was followed by numerous reactions.
Albanian media announced that the victim was an armed extremist.
Greek media reported that the victim was killed after raising the Greek flag near the cemetery of Greek soldiers fallen during the Anti-Fascist war during today’s ceremony on the occasion of Greek national day. Greek media said that Albanian police took down the flag and then executed the 35 year old man.
Greek minister of Culture, Mirsini Zorba declared late in the afternoon that during the event which he attended, no incident was registered and the Greek flag was not taken down.
Ministry of Foreign Affairs Announcement on the death of a Greek citizen during an exchange of fire in Bularat.
The reaction says:
Greek authorities, in close contact with Albanian authorities, closely followed, from the very first moment, developments related to an incident in the Albanian village of Bularat, where a Greek citizen allegedly opened fire against Albanian police with a Kalashnikov firearm, who in turn attempted to apprehend him.
A short while ago, we were formally informed that Konstantinos Katsifas was killed during an exchange of fire with Albanian police.
We express our deep sorrow on the death of the Greek expatriate, as well as our condolences to his family.
In any case, it is unacceptable that the operation led to the loss of human life.
We await for the Albanian authorities to provide complete clarification about the conditions under which the Greek citizen lost his life, and we shall proceed with all necessary action immediately.
A few minutes later, the Albanian Foreign ministry also reacted by saying:
The Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Albania, along with the regret for the incident that happened today in Bularat, Gjirokastër, where the citizen Konstandinos Kacifa lost his life, also expresses regret for the unjustified politicization of the event in the neighboring country.
The circumstances on which the citizen Kacifa lost his life have been officially announced by the respective Albanian authorities. The state police have clarified in detail that this is an entirely isolated incident from today’s activities in that area and is a flagrant case of extremist aggression towards the Albanian Police.
The Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs expresses disappointment for the reaction of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Greece, which not only does not condemn the armed attack towards our law enforcement forces but talks about “unacceptable loss of life”.
While calling for caution and avoidance of attributing political and diplomatic nuances to this clear and unprecedented case, we assure our neighbor that Albania is a safe and peaceful place for all its citizens, without any distinction including those of Greek ethnicity.
Greeks protest in front of the embassy in Athens: We should burn Albanians
With flags in their hands and chanting slogans such as “Albanians are dogs, let’s burn them in the fire”, Greek citizens have protested in front of the Albanian embassy to Athens.
Protesters were organized in social networks, while at 7.30 pm they gathered and protested. No incident was registered during the protest, but the slogans which were chanted by the Greeks were strong.
PM Rama reacts
Dear neighbours! Instead of considering the death of an insane person who opened fire on our police forces, which were trying to do their job, join us in thanking the Lord that no innocent life was lost today as a result of this extremist insanity. /ibna/