US Secretary of State Blinken: Bulgaria is an extraordinary partner for the US

Bulgaria is an extraordinary partner for the United States, for Europe, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said on February 16 at the start of a meeting with a Bulgarian government delegation headed by Prime Minister Nikolai Denkov.

“We see that playing out every single day in a whole variety of ways, but we are working together to rapidly increase our civil nuclear cooperation,” Blinken said at the meeting, held on the sidelines of the annual Munich Security Conference.

“Of course, we’re also working on military modernisation, including with F-16s, with Strykers, and most significantly as well continuing to deepen integration between Bulgaria, the European Union, and Nato,” Blinken said.

“I want to thank you, all of the leadership, for the extraordinary assistance that Bulgaria has provided to Ukraine, and continues to provide every single day – leadership for security, for stability – both with regard to Ukraine, but more broadly, the entire Black Sea region.

“And we see that, of course, in the military and humanitarian assistance that Bulgaria has provided; now the trilateral mine clearing that’s underway with Romania and Türkiye; and the genuine, real, powerful support for Ukrainians who have been forced to flee their homes as a result of the Russian aggression.”

Blinken noted the important work being done together by the US and Bulgaria to counter disinformation – “a front in conflict that demands our attention”.

Denkov, who was accompanied by Deputy PM and Foreign Minister Maria Gabriel, Finance Minister Assen Vassilev and Defence Minister Todor Tagarev, said that at the beginning of Russia’s war in Ukraine, the position of Bulgaria became very important as part of Europe.

Bulgaria was a key country for the defense and deterrence efforts in the Black Sea region, Denkov said.

The current problematic issues today could be also used as opportunities to develop the region, and with the Bulgarian and the other Allies of Nato, the place to be sure that this is a stable region.

“We are very committed and that is why we are here with Maria Gabriel – to work together to place Bulgaria where it belongs, in the structures of Europe and the structure of Nato, and to be reliable partners there.”

Denkov also emphasised the development of the South-North corridor, from the Greek ports, through Bulgaria to Romania, Ukraine and Moldova.

“These are tasks that, on the one hand, require serious investments, and on the other hand, are very important for both the economic and defence development of the region,” he said.

Denkov especially thanked the US for its support when Russia stopped gas supplies to Bulgaria.

“And then you were there to help us, and we can rely on US in the future.  Thank you,” he said.


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The Sofia Globe staff

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