Cabinet approves changes to Penal Code to bolster fight against terrorism

Bulgaria’s cabinet has approved proposed amendments to the Penal Code aimed at strengthening the fight against terrorism, including against stemming the flow of “foreign fighters”.

The amendments close gaps in the Penal Code regarding potential terrorist threats and also meet the requirements of the United Nations Security Council’s September 2014 Resolution 2178, the government media service said.

The new measures include restrictions on the free movement of people travelling for training, planning or participating in terrorist acts, and against providing or receiving terrorist training, and providing for criminal prosecution of any person participating in the financing, planning or preparation of terrorist acts or in supporting terrorist acts, while also limiting the possibility of terrorist groups creating a safe haven, the statement said.

The bill, to be tabled in Bulgaria’s National Assembly, adds to and amends clauses in the Penal Code’s chapter one, “Crimes against the Republic”.

It supplements an article of the Penal Code to legislate against cybercrime linked to cyber-terrorism.

The bill also criminalises preliminary activities aimed at committing terrorist crimes abroad and crossing the border with the intention of doing so.

It criminalises consent by a person to be trained in terrorist activities. However, the person would not be liable to punishment if voluntarily reporting to the proper authorities and fully disclosing all information about the criminal activities, the government media service said.



The Sofia Globe staff

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