PM to lead Bulgarian coalition government delegation to Kyiv on April 27

A delegation from Bulgaria’s ruling coalition, headed by Prime Minister Kiril Petkov, will travel to Ukraine’s capital city Kyiv on April 27, Petkov confirmed in a television interview on April 24.

It is not yet clear who from the four constituent parties of the ruling majority will participate in the delegation.

So far, only Slavi Trifonov’s ITN party has named a member of the delegation, MP Stanislav Balabanov.

Democratic Bulgaria is expected to announce its decision after the four-day holiday weekend.

The Bulgarian Socialist Party also will announce a decision after the weekend. It is not yet known whether the BSP will participate in the delegation.

Petkov told bTV that first, the delegation would hand over the helmets and protective vests that the Cabinet earlier agreed to send to Ukraine’s civilian population.

“Second, the coalition must show support for Ukraine together, and being there is symbolic,” Petkov said.

“Third, we will continue to discuss the issue and how is it possible for our ship from the Black Sea to come back, and fourth, to come out with a joint message from the coalition, maybe not immediately, but to hear first what their real needs are,” he said.

Petkov reiterated that personally, he supported the idea of Bulgaria sending military equipment to Ukraine “but as Prime Minister, my my first task is to make this coalition come up with a common position”.

Within the ruling majority, the BSP opposes sending military aid to Ukraine, while Democratic Bulgaria and ITN are in favour.

Petkov’s We Continue the Change party hopes to broke an agreement within the ruling coalition on the issue.

Among Bulgaria’s opposition parliamentary groups, GERB-UDF and the Movement for Rights and Freedoms are in favour of sending arms to Ukraine, while pro-Kremlin Vuzhrazhdane, the smallest group in the National Assembly, is against.


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The Sofia Globe staff

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