Defence Minister orders inquiry after reports Anevo site was testing weapons for Syrian opposition

Bulgaria’s Defence Minister Nikolai Nenchev has ordered a full inquiry following a media report that US citizens involved in a grenade blast in which one died and others were injured were testing weapons for delivery to the Syrian opposition, in turn to fight the “Islamic State” terrorist group.

Nenchev said that he had given Military Intelligence until the end of the day on June 10 to report on the case.

A report by Reuters on June 9, quoting a US military source, said that the weapons were being tested for use in a US-led military mission to equip Syrian opposition fighters battling the “Islamic State”.

Nenchev said, “all because there were indications that Bulgarian weapons are being used there! I would like to know from where and how they got there, but in Anevo it is a case of relations between a private company and the US department, as I understand it, so we really have no connection. We never have had”.

In the June 6 incident at the VMZ Sopot site, which had been hired by a private company Alguns, a US citizen died, and four others were injured, an American, a Canadian and two Bulgarians.

The incident happened while testing a grenade, later said by the Economy Ministry to have been paid of weapons stock dating back decades.

On June 9, two of those injured, the American and the Canadian, were flown out of Bulgaria for treatment at a US military hospital in Germany.

The Plovdiv Prosecutor’s Office is investigating the incident at the VMZ Sopot site near the village of Anevo. There is liaison with US authorities because of the involvement of their nationals.



The Sofia Globe staff

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