Bulgarian PM ‘deeply concerned’ by violence in Turkey

Commenting on July 18 in the wake of the attempted coup in Turkey, Bulgarian Prime Minister Boiko Borissov said that he was deeply concerned by the escalation of revenge and the spiral of violence formed.

In a Facebook post, Borissov said that even on the night of the attempted coup, when he had called a special meeting of the Bulgarian Cabinet, he had told the media that he had always been for the rule of law.

“Just as I believe that elections are the democratic way to change a government, I define fair trial as the only reasonable approach to the search for the truth,” Borissov said.

“Violence produces violence. Peace is not achieved through war and killing,” he said.

He said that he hoped that the horrific events in Turkeys, which led to hundreds of innocent victims being killed, would be an example of the necessity to maintain lawfulness, democracy and the maintenance of all human rights.

Bulgarian Defence Minister Nikolai Nenchev said on July 18 that the situation along Bulgaria’s border with Turkey was calm.

There had been no increased influx of people, he said.

“We are doing everything in our power and at the same time we are ready to send an additional unit if necessary. But there is no need at this time,” Nenchev said.

Meanwhile, Foreign Minister Daniel Mitov has spoken on the issue of the order given to Bulgaria’s ambassador in Ankara, Nadezhda Neynsky, to make no public comments about the political situation in Turkey.

The gag order to Neynsky, who was Bulgaria’s foreign minister from 1997 to 2001, emerged in media reports and was confirmed by Neynsky and the Foreign Ministry.

Mitov, speaking to reporters while attending a meeting of EU foreign ministers, said that it had not been a conventional situation.

“No ambassador in such a situation can afford to make public statements,” Mitov said, adding that in such a situation, public appearances and statements were “centralised”.

The Foreign Ministry had been gathering information and passing it to the media, with instructions to Bulgarian citizens.

“For us it was most important to take care of people who could get into trouble. The task as Mrs Neynsky as ambassador was to co-ordinate and monitor that, and not to give statements to the media.”

This was regulated by the Diplomatic Service Act, which governs public appearances by members of the diplomatic service, which may be made only with the express consent of the Foreign Minister. “So in this case there is nothing unusual,” Mitov said.



The Sofia Globe staff

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