Ethnic Greek man killed by Albanian police in shootout

Ethnic Greek man killed by Albanian police in shootout

Albanian police shot and killed an ethnic Greek man on Sunday after he opened fire against officers taking down a Greek flag at a World War II cemetery in the village of Bularat, some 6 kilometers from Albania's border with Greece.

According to Albanian media reports the man, identified as 35-year-old Konstantinos Kacifa (Katsifas), opened fire against officers with a Kalashnikov assault rifle as they were taking down the flag he had raised at a cemetery for Greek soldiers who died in battle. The incident took place as the village, which is mostly ethnic Greek, marked the anniversary of Greece's entry into the war in 1940.

Kacifa reportedly ran into the village firing his weapon and then into the mountains in an effort to evade arrest but was intercepted shortly after by a team from the Albanian police's special forces, who claimed that the 35-year-old shot at them before they opened fire and killed him.

Kacifa, whose family hailed from the northwestern Greek town of Ioannina, was born and grew up in Bularat but had been living in Athens recently, according to reports. Photographs in Greek media show him dressed in military-style clothes, with a Greek flag patch on his arm.

Police confirmed his death in a shootout.

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