Bulgaria’s national day of parades and protests: Photo gallery

March 3 2013 saw Bulgaria’s senior state leaders and foreign diplomats gather at the Monument to the Unknown Soldier in Sofia for a solemn ceremony in honour of the country’s national day – and the capital city also saw thousands turn out in the streets for the latest demonstration against monopolies and Bulgaria’s established political system in general.

President Plevneliev arrives for the flag-raising ceremony on the morning of March 3. Photo: Clive Leviev-Sawyer
Plevneliev inspects the parade. Photo: Clive Leviev-Sawyer

Patriarch Neofit of the Bulgarian Orthodox Church arrives for the flag-raising ceremony. Photo: Clive Leviev-Sawyer
After the flag-raising ceremony, Plevneliev made a brief meet-and-greet foray to greet the public lined up at the foot of the steps of Alexander Nevsky cathedral. While generally well-received by the crowd, Plevneliev also heard the shouts of those who clearly shared the views of the protesters. Photo: Clive Leviev-Sawyer


As protesters neared Parliament, a group of men cracked open cardboard boxes filled with these t-shirts, reading 'To prison with the organised crime thug oligarch Borissov', and handed them to all who wanted one. Many did. Photo: Clive Leviev-Sawyer
The poster on the left reads, 'the Bulgarian spring has come'. Whether the analogy is to the Prague Spring or the Arab Spring or both is a matter of interpretation. Photo: Clive Leviev-Sawyer
'No to monopolies' was this man's message. Photo: Clive Leviev-Sawyer
A poster addressed to senior GERB MP Iskra Fidossova: 'Fidossova, stop eating'. Photo: Clive Leviev-Sawyer

Photo: Clive Leviev-Sawyer

At the monument to Vassil Levski, protesters laid flowers, in itself a protest because on the day commemorating the hanging of Levski, they had been denied access while senior state officials were present. Photo: Clive Leviev-Sawyer


At the monument, protesters were exhorted to bow to the memory of Levski. Photo: Clive Leviev-Sawyer
Photo: Clive Leviev-Sawyer


Photo: Clive Leviev-Sawyer




Clive Leviev-Sawyer

Clive Leviev-Sawyer is the Publisher and Editor-in-Chief of The Sofia Globe. He is the author of the book Bulgaria: Politics and Protests in the 21st Century (Riva Publishers, 2015), and co-author of the book Bulgarian Jews: Living History (The Organization of the Jews in Bulgaria 'Shalom', 2018). He is also the author of Power: A Political Novel, available via amazon.com, and, on the lighter side, Whiskers And Other Short Tales of Cats (2021), also available via Amazon. He has translated books and numerous texts from Bulgarian into English.