Smoke and Mirrors: A Macedonian Spy Mystery

Benjamin Arifi

Did Macedonia's Intelligence Agency stage a deadly shootout to distract from a corruption scandal? On the third anniversary of the Kumanovo incident, BIRN sifts through the evidence.

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Toxic Taps: Arsenic in Water Stirs Cancer Fears

Milos Stanic

Almost a million people in Serbia, Croatia and Hungary are exposed to carcinogenic drinking water with arsenic levels above the legal limit, a BIRN investigation reveals.


Unsafe Haven: Life and Death for LGBT Refugees

Alexia Tsagkari

Shunned, abused, murdered. For many LGBT asylum seekers in Turkey and Greece, every day is a struggle for survival.

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Access Denied: Divorced Dads Fight for Kids

Zdravko Ljubas

Courts in the Balkans usually side with mothers in child custody cases. Now some fathers are fighting the system. Kids are caught in the crossfire.


Parallel Profits: Bulgaria’s Medical Drug Dealers

Dimitar Iliev

Lax controls over the ‘parallel trade’ of expensive pharmaceuticals makes Bulgaria’s health care system ripe for plunder. Patients are the losers.

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Fatal Inaction: How Measles Made a Comeback

Octavian Coman

Romania’s failure to prevent a deadly measles outbreak is a story of complacency, bungling and discrimination. It is also a cautionary tale for Europe.

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Lawless Lake: Ex-Smugglers Find New Fish to Fry

Ivan Cadjenovic

On the biggest lake in the Balkans, rangers say it is easier to catch a drug trafficker than a poacher amid warnings of ecological disaster.

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Selective Amnesia: Croatia’s Holocaust Deniers

Tamara Opacic

Despite laws against the denial or diminishment of genocide crimes, the EU’s newest member state has done little to crack down on voices downplaying World War II atrocities.


Vicious Cycle: Kosovo’s Battered Women Syndrome

Shqipe Gjocaj

Kosovo’s international isolation makes it a legal “black hole” for victims of domestic violence caught in a cycle of discrimination and double standards.


Party Games: Hide and Seek with Election Cash

Vladimir Kostic

Powerful parties in the Balkans are suspected of using proxy donors to fill campaign war chests with cash from secret sources. How authorities respond is a test of their independence.