US, Bulgaria begin celebrations of 120 years of diplomatic relations

The United States and Bulgaria have begun celebrations of 120 years of diplomatic relations, statements by the US embassy in Sofia and Bulgaria’s Foreign Ministry said on January 12.

Relations between Bulgaria and the US were first formally established in 1903, and on January 12 1912, the US opened its first consular agency in Bulgaria.

To mark the occasion, US ambassador Herro Mustafa met caretaker Foreign Minister Milkov at the memorial honouring Bulgarian Asen Kermekchiev (also known as Ace Kermek) who was the first American consular agent in Bulgaria.

Kermekchiev was a prominent Bulgarian businessman, physician, and journalist.

He represented the US government even while working as a field doctor for Bulgaria in the First Balkan War and was praised for protecting American lives and property while at the front.

He founded the first American Chamber of Commerce in Sofia.

In 2012, the US ambassador at the time, James Warlick,unveiled the plaque dedicated to Kermek, marking the 100th anniversary of the opening of the consular agency.

“Today, Bulgaria and the US are allies and strategic partners on the international stage and are actively working to find sustainable solutions to contemporary global and regional challenges,” the Foreign Ministry said.

The celebrations of the 120th anniversary of bilateral relations will continue throughout 2023 and will include various cultural events and activities that will culminate in September, the ministry said.

(Photo: Bulgaria’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs)

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