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Police in Kosovo seize counterfeit notes with face value of 2 million euros

PRISTINA (Reuters) - Police in Kosovo on Friday seized counterfeit banknotes with a face value of 2 million euros ($2.13 million), the biggest such catch in almost two decades, and arrested two people in connection with the case.

The suspects, a man from Cameroon and an Albanian citizen, were stopped by police at the border with neighboring Albania in the early hours of Friday morning, police said in a statement.

A bag containing the forged money was found in their car.

The seizure is the biggest of its kind since the end of the 1999 war in Kosovo which in 2008 declared independence from Serbia, the police said.

Despite the presence of European Union (EU) judiciary officials, police and NATO peacekeepers, the borders of Kosovo remain porous and smuggling is widespread.

The government in Pristina is trying to root out organized crime and corruption to speed up its bid to come closer to the EU.

The counterfeit money included banknotes with a face value of 500, 200, 100 and 50 euros. The bag also contained three thousand sheets of paper and chemicals used for printing fake money.

(Reporting by Fatos Bytyci, editing by Ed Osmond)

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