North Macedonia ‘Close’ to Exposing False Bomb Threats to Schools – Minister

North Macedonia's Interior Minister Oliver Spasovski said the police was close to cracking a group of connected people they believe are behind the recent wave of bomb threats targeting schools and who he said have used VPN to hide their tracks, to make it look as if the threats are coming from addresses in Iran and Russia.

"Very soon this entire group will be completely uncovered and terrorism charges will be filed," Spasovski told Radio Free Europe over the weekend.

He added that police believe the group is behind "a large part of these [false bomb] threats", which have been sent "over a long time period and concern a number of [educational] institutions".

Since last autumn, the country, like several others in the Balkans, has been dealing with a slew of false bomb threats, primarily directed at elementary and high schools but also targeting other public venues and institutions such as bus and train stations, airports, shopping malls, ministries, etc.

Faced with up to several dozen scares almost daily, it has put a severe strain on security services and on daily life, as many venues have to be daily emptied and checked.

The ministry has been criticised for not resolving the situation, which many experts called a form of hybrid attack, probably linked to the Russian attack on Ukraine.

About one month ago, authorities stopped informing the public about these scares in order to curb the panic spread through the media, and instead deal with them quietly.  Meanwhile security and a police presence has been boosted at schools.

The minister told the interview that the threats have not stopped.

Regarding also increased hacker attacks on state institutions and false bomb scares sent to other venues, the minister said...

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