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Vranje Restaurant Destroyed in Explosion

Vranje | 26 October 2009 | Nikola Lazic
Kubura restaurant in dowtown Vranje after explosion (photo by Novine Vranjske)
Kubura restaurant in dowtown Vranje after explosion (photo by Novine Vranjske)
The Kubura restaurant in downtown Vranje, Serbia was completely destroyed in an explosion, that occurred at around 1.30am on Monday morning. The investigating judge of Municipal Court in Vranje, Nada Covic, said that no one was injured in the blast, but that it caused considerable material damage.

"Initial results of the investigation all indicate that the incident was caused by an explosive device. Special police teams from Belgrade are to arrive and start working on the case," Covic said.

A person who lives next to the destroyed restaurant, Gordana Bjelopera, said she was awoken by a "tremendously powerful explosion".

"I'm very upset […] fortunately my house did not catch fire [from the flames] which came from the explosion," she said.

Bjelopera added that police and firefighters arrived on the scene a couple of minutes after the explosion.

While details of the blast remain unknown, it is speculated that the explosive device was planted by a professional.

"Only the building, where the restaurant was, has been totally destroyed, while the nearby buildings remained undamaged,” a police source told Balkan Insight.

The restaurant owner, Ivica Vojinovic, is a close friend of controversial businessman Goran Tasic Gokce, who was released from a six-month stint in jail in August, having paid €30,000 bail. He is suspected of an attempted murder in October 2008.

Vojinovic spent three months in custody due to suspicions that he had helped Tasic commit the crime.

The District Prosecutor's Office has filed an indictment against Vojnovic and Tasic in relation to these crimes. A trial date is expected soon.

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