Bulgaria court to consider application to de-register political party behind ‘Lukov March’

The Sofia City Court said that it has agreed to hear an application by the Prosecutor’s Office to cancel the registration of the Bulgarian National Union – Edelweiss, organiser of the annual Lukov March held in the streets of Bulgaria’s capital city in tribute to a pro-Nazi general.

The Lukov March, drawing neo-Nazis from other parts of Europe, was first held in 2003, though in February 2020 was prevented, after a court upheld a ban by the mayor of Sofia.

Prosecutors say that the BNU – Edelweiss carries out activities that contradict Bulgaria’s constitution, and which are aimed at provoking racial, ethnic and religious enmity.

The application says that BNU – Edelweiss has a paramilitary structure, while its board membership falls short of legal requirements.

The court also accepted the numerous pieces of evidence presented, substantiating the need to terminate the registration of the association.

During an investigation, numerous public speeches of members of the association’s leadership and activists were found, containing incitement to violence and hate speech based on religious, racial and sexual affiliation, as well as antisemitism.

It was also found that the association had set up its own paramilitary structure, and many illegally possessed firearms, ammunition as well as police-style clothing were found and seized in the home of an activist of the association.

A ruling is scheduled for October 5.

The BNU – Edelweiss was in the headlines after one of its activists, Emil Krumov, committed suicide in the State Agency for National Security after being called there for questioning.

A subsequent search of his home found several illegally-possessed firearms, ammunition and Nazi literature, including Adolf Hitler’s book Mein Kampf.

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The Sofia Globe staff

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