Bulgarian Prime Minister Boiko Borissov has come to the defence of one of his deputy prime ministers, ultra-nationalist leader Valeri Simeonov, over his controversial raids on places of entertainment in Black Sea summer resort Sunny Beach.
Simeonov – who has been leading joint teams of police, revenue and other government agencies in the raids of night clubs and other places – had been acting according to the law, Borissov said on August 17.
Simeonov, who is co-leader of the United Patriots, minority partner in the Borissov government, pledged at the start of summer to act against excessive noise and other illicit practices at holiday resorts. Sunny Beach has been in the particular focus of his attention, though at a news conference earlier this week, he denied being “fixated” on it.
Borissov said that in connection with two of the establishments that had been raided, complaints had been lodged. There were 10 in the case of one and 20 in the case of the other, he said.
Bulgarian law did not allow noise after 11pm, Borissov said.
“He (Simeonov) is acting within the limits of his powers and within what is written in the law,” Borissov said.
If changes to the law were wanted, the matter should be debated in Parliament, he said.
“The law is there to be applied,” Borissov said.
There were protests by hundreds of staff and owners from Sunny Beach against Simeonov on August 16, calling for his resignation. Simeonov said that organised crime groups were behind the protests.