Bulgarian ultra-nationalist MP ‘flattered’ by being persona non grata in Ukraine

An MP for Bulgaria’s ultra-nationalist Ataka party said on November 6 that she was “flattered” at having been declared persona non grata by Ukraine for having been an “international observer” at elections in eastern Ukraine four days earlier that have been widely rejected by the United Nations, European Union, United States – and Bulgaria.

Magdalena Tasheva of Ataka was among a list of people from various countries, most from fringe ultra-nationalist and Eurosceptic parties, that were present at the “presidential and parliamentary elections” in the so-called Luhansk and Donetsk people’s republics on November 2.

In a blog post on November 1, commentator Anton Shekhovtsov listed the “observers” and alleged that because they had not passed Ukrainian border control, they had entered Ukraine illegally.

Tasheva, appearing on Bulgarian local television station bTV on November 6, said that the decision on persona non grata had been taken by Ukraine’s council for national security and defence, which she described as headed by a “neo-fascist, from the butcher of Odessa”.

Reports said that Tasheva and a further 17 “observers” from EU countries and the US were declared persona non grata by the Ukrainian interior ministry because of their presence at the illegal elections in the two so-called republics.

Tasheva said that she had not represented Bulgaria, but her parties. She said that she was there with members of other Eurosceptic parties, such as Hungary’s Jobbik and the French Front National.

Tasheva, a member of the now-departed 42nd National Assembly and returned to the 43rd National Assembly, in which Ataka is one of the two smallest parties, previously has generated controversy by referring to Syrian refugees coming to Bulgaria as a “malignant tumour” and as “cannibals” among other epithets.

One of her “recommends” on her Facebook page is a petition for Bulgaria to support the policy of Russia and reject what it calls the “anti-Russian position of the official government of Bulgaria”.



The Sofia Globe staff

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