In the volatile north of Kosovo, police are being targeted

In the volatile north of Kosovo, police are being targeted ...

PRISTINA, April 15 (Reuters) - Two of Kosovo patrol vehicles were under fire on Friday in the country's north near its border with Serbia, where ethnic tensions have simmered for more than two decades since the war between ethnic Albanians and Serb forces sprang.

While travelling at one of the border crossings, police said officers were ambushed and attacked with a hand grenade and an AK-47 assault rifle, but no one was hurt. It is the fourth attack in three days.

A police official told Reuters that the attack was related to smuggling activities in the region or to tensions between Serbia and Kosovo.

"Today's assault with a hand grenade and the AK-47 was a terrorist act, and it was done in order to intimidate police officers and all citizens of Kosovo," Interior Minister Xhelal Svecla told a press conference while showing photos of damaged armored police cars.

Kosovo's north is home to 50,000 serbs, who backed by Belgrade want to break away along ethnic lines and unite with Serbia, and has experienced numerous violent flare-ups since Kosovo declared independence from Serbia in 2008. A large area also serves smugglers to transport goods between the two countries.

Kosovo police have closed many illegal roads which used to transport people and goods from Serbia to Kosovo in the past weeks.

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