"Smoke on the horizon" is a new GI-TOK publication about illegal weapons in the Balkans

In his new publication The Global Initiative Against Transnational Organized Crime (GI-TOC) titled as Smoke on the horizon" analyze that as INTO ce increases the flow of weapons in the Russian-Ukrainian war, so in parallel ce it also increases the risk of potential smuggling of the same beyond the borders of the war.

Aleksandar Srbinovski, the coordinator for Macedonia and Southeast Europe for GI-TOK, informs that this research was carried out in 2023 and 2024 year on the territory of Ukraine and in the countries of Western and Eastern Europe and the Balkans.

- In the research, we collected black market prices for weapons in Ukraine, Europe and the Balkans, assuming that if ce perform a price comparison in different locations, you will ce learn about potential changes in this illegal business. Precisely the sublimated data in this way will shed new light on the nature of the supply and demand of illegal weapons on a national and transnational level - says Srbinovski.

According to him, the data in the research ce obtained from at least a hundred interviews with representatives of the police of the states in Europe, investigative journalists, university professors as and the representatives of the underground in numerous countries.

Aleksandar Srbinovski / Photo: "Free Press", Dragan Mitreski

– Qualitative interviews with underground sources, law enforcement, journalists and others helped to ce clarify the picture of this problem in terms of data on the demand for weapons among criminals, risk appetite and potential drivers and barriers of these structures. So that we have the complete picture ce carried out and collected information on seizures and official reports on firearms and research on the trade of weapons on the dark web internet pages - explains Srbinovski.

What ce refers to the Balkans, adds Srbinovski to the data in the publication" Smoke on the horizon", say that at least for the time being there is no evidence that Balkan criminal groups smuggle weapons to and from the Ukrainian fronts, but what is very worrying is that the price of illegal weapons is increasing in the region, and this in turn initiates that the weapons in the Balkans are also growing demand.

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