Bulgarian President meets intelligence and security chiefs, Prosecutor-General over worsening relations with Turkey

Bulgarian head of state President Roumen Radev called a special meeting on the afternoon of March 20 with several senior state officials, including intelligence and security chiefs and the Prosecutor-General.

Those taking part in the meeting included caretaker Interior Minister Plamen Uzunov, Prosecutor-General Sotir Tsatsarov, State Agency for National Security head Dimitar Georgiev and Intelligence agency chief Dragomir Dimitrov, Bulgarian National Television said.

The meeting comes six days before Bulgaria goes to the polls in early parliamentary elections.

Reports said that the meeting was being held in connection with worsening relations between Bulgaria and Turkey because of Ankara’s overt support for one of the parties taking part in the election, Lyutvi Mestan’s DOST.

But a single-sentence statement by the President’s office, about two hours after the meeting ended, said only that the meeting had been dedicated to “the conduct of the early parliamentary elections and the security of the country”.

The Foreign Ministry, some days ago, summoned the Turkish ambassador to express Bulgaria’s discontent with Turkey’s conduct. Bulgaria’s ambassador in Ankara subsequently was recalled for consultations about arrangements regarding the holding of voting in Turkey.

In a television interview on March 17, Radev said that Turkey’s interference in Bulgaria’s elections was a fact and was totally unacceptable.

Earlier the same day, it was announced that Bulgaria’s security agency had expelled two Turkish citizens from the country and declared a third persona non grata.




The Sofia Globe staff

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