Speaking at a news conference during his one-day visit to Sofia on July 6, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy repeatedly thanked Bulgaria for its support.
Addressing the media after talks with Prime Minister Nikolai Denkov and Deputy PM and Foreign Minister Maria Gabriel, Zelenskyy described Bulgaria as a defender “an opponent of the policy of genocide that Russia is conducting against our country, independence, freedom and people”.
“I want to thank you, Bulgaria, for supporting and protecting the lives of our people, for the moral strength of your decisions and for honestly recognizing the reality and the existing threats,” Zelenskyy said.
He said that he greatly appreciated the way that Bulgaria had received people from Ukraine.
“It was a very difficult time for our country. I am very grateful to all the people, for the shelter, for the support. Ukraine will never forget that in such a difficult moment, of loss, of a struggle for human lives, you are with us,” Zelenskyy said.
He singled out Denkov, Gabriel, the entire government and the National Assembly for thanks.
Denkov took office a month ago, on June 6, at the head of a pro-Western government with a policy of support for Ukraine, including the provision of weaponry, in contrast to the caretaker governments that were appointed by President Roumen Radev.
“Russian artillery burns villages to ashes in Ukraine. They kill, torture, deport children, separate them from their families…While this aggression lasts, today we agreed to strengthen cooperation with Bulgaria in the defence sector. The help you provide us, we rely on this cooperation, which helped us to protect many people,” Zelenskyy said.
Zelenskyy told the briefing that at the meeting in the Cabinet office, it had been agreed to expand cooperation in the field of defence, which also could include medical treatment of Ukrainian military personnel in Bulgaria, as well as the training of Ukrainian military paramedics and medics in Bulgaria. Talks on this were continuing.
He said that Bulgaria could take part in the reconstruction of Ukraine, especially in the educational and environmental spheres.
Cooperation in the field of energy was also discussed, Zelenskyy said, saying that this was becoming one of the priorities for the cooperation between Bulgaria and Ukraine. The energy ministers of the two countries signed a memorandum of cooperation in the field of energy.
He said that Ukraine was counting on Bulgaria’s support for its future membership of the EU and Nato.
Zelenskyy announced that he had informed Denkov about his initiative for a world forum on the Peace Formula.
“I am happy about the readiness of Bulgaria to take part in these efforts of ours. We are preparing a summit meeting, the ambassador of Bulgaria to Ukraine has not yet been appointed,” said Zelensky and announced that he hoped that this issue would be resolved at his meeting with Radev.
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