Police, NATO destroy marijuana plants in Kosovo

Discussion in 'Marijuana News' started by Superjoint, Jul 20, 2002.

  1. Sat Jul 13, 8:55 AM ET
    By GARENTINA KRAJA, Associated Press Writer

    VUCITRN, Yugoslavia - Police and NATO led peacekeepers pulled up marijuana plants from fields in northern Kosovo on Saturday in an attempt to destroy one of the largest findings of the narcotic in the province.

    About 40 local and U.N. police officers, backed up by 20 French peacekeepers, pulled up the plants, where they were growing in patches alongside other vegetation, in the town of Vucitrn, some 30 kilometers north of the capital, Pristina.

    Wearing plastic gloves, the officials - some in uniform and some in jogging outfits - pulled up the plants by their roots to prevent them from growing again. They then threw big bunches of the plants to a truck to carry away to be destroyed.

    It was an unusual task for the peacekeepers and the police, who are charged with bringing peace and security to an area marked by bitter tensions between the province's ethnic Albanian majority and the Serb minority.

    U.N. and NATO officials have been here since 1999, after a NATO-led air war stopped a 1998-1999 crackdown by Serb forces on the province's ethnic Albanians.

    NATO-led peacekeepers first discovered the illegal narcotic two weeks ago on a strip of land along a busy road that they were patrolling, said John Chapman, a spokesman for the U.N. police.

    That initial finding in this town of 99,000 triggered an investigation by the U.N. police, who found another three locations with the narcotic in the same area - with the several patches adding up to about one acre (0.4 hectares), police said.

    "It's a big find," Chapman said. "We are estimating it at over 1 million dollars street value."

    Officials did not burn the land to protect privately owned corn and potato fields growing alongside the marijuana.

    Police have launched an investigation, but had so far made no arrests. They believe, however, that the size of the plants and extent of the cultivation indicate they had been planted before 1999.

    "Most likely it existed before the war," Chapman said. "If you don't pull it out by the roots it will continue to seed and grow and by the looks of this, it has been growing for quite some time."

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  2. damn, I wish I was the one who from $1,000,000 worth of weed before they did :(

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