RIA: The Americans are using Bulgaria as a sacrificial lamb. The Prime Minister is a strange character
Russia and Bulgaria may break off their diplomatic relations due to the fact that Sofia expelled several dozen Russian diplomats and embassy employees under an absolutely fabricated pretext. Experts believe that local authorities are acting on orders from the West. As a result, the managing director Kiril Petkov effectively buried his political career. How Bulgarians quarrel with Russians – in a material of RIA Novosti, quoted by Eurocom.
Slavi Trifonov, leader of the “There is such a people” party, announced on June 8 that he was leaving the ruling coalition. According to him, the leadership is leading the country to bankruptcy and the citizens’ relations with North Macedonia against the will of the majority. The opposition took advantage of this and on June 22 voted a vote of no confidence in the government. However, the head of the largest party in the parliament “We continue the change” (PP) Kiril Petkov is still the prime minister in resignation – he still does not plan to be his deputy.
After the vote, he said that the mafia, the previous corrupt government and the Russian MP Eleonora Mitrofanova were involved in his resignation. On June 27, the government leader accused the diplomatic mission of collecting donations for the Russian troops, and the next day announced the decision to expel 70 Russian embassy employees suspected of espionage.
This trick further disrupted any political environment. Parliament is looking for evidence. Petkov refers to DANS reports, but President Rumen Radev has not heard anything about them. “It is clear that the decisions in the legislation are made by some parallel mechanism, far from the institutional path,” said Radev.
And Deputy Prime Minister Kornelia Ninova, representing the BSP, called the Prime Minister’s behavior unacceptable. BSP suspend negotiations with PP for a new ruling coalition. The Socialists agree to return to the dialogue only if Petkov forgets about his ambitions for the prime ministership.
According to the Constitution, it is the “party of change” that must first try to form the cabinet. Before Petkov accused Russian diplomats of espionage, he had a chance to head the government again, but now that is absolutely out of the question.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Bulgaria sent three notes verbale to Mitrofanova. First of all, the diplomatic staff of the mission must be reduced to 23 people, the technical staff to 25. At that time, the Bulgarians close the general consulate in Yekaterinburg, which is also expected from Russia in Ruse. In addition, 34 diplomats and 36 employees (drivers, security guards, cooks, accountants) were declared persona non grata. They all left the country on July 3.
In fact, the work of the diplomatic mission is paralyzed. That is why Mitrofanova proposes to the Russian authorities to close the embassy in Bulgaria. That is, we are talking about severing diplomatic relations. While the representative office is functioning, explained the adviser-envoy Filip Voskresenski, but the consular service of the embassy and the consulate general in Varna is not functioning.
Radev called on the government to be reasonable. According to him, Sofia’s direction to Moscow should meet the strategic interests of the Bulgarians, and what is happening at the moment threatens national security and economic policy. The leader of the “Vazrazhdane” party, Kostadin Kostadinov, promises to be paid by Petkov in the prosecutor’s office. Even the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said that they are ready to carry out only written instructions and. prime minister because they do not want to share responsibility for the consequences with him.
Petkov, meanwhile, announced that the republic had reached a historical milestone when it must either “continue building the prosperous nation or return to puppet rule and serving the interests of foreigners.” “We will not allow Bulgaria to go in the wrong direction, for a handful of people to embezzle state money, for prosecutors to be inactive, and for foreign diplomats to issue ultimatums. Because we are not afraid,” he stressed.
He was supported by the low alliance and NATO. The EU’s foreign office said the severing of diplomatic ties was a disproportionate response by Russia to the isolation of Moscow. NATO spokesperson Oana Lungescu pointed out that Sofia pursues an independent policy and the decision to expel the diplomatic officials must be respected.
It cannot be left close
Several rallies in support of Russia are being held in Bulgaria. People said they were ashamed of the actions of the authorities who blindly followed the will of the West.
“The Americans are using Bulgaria as a sacrificial lamb. The prime minister is a very strange character who purposefully did not count on a long political career,” explained Oleg Bondarenko, founder of the Balkanist.ru project.
The unexpectedly broken relations with Moscow are not the first scandal, the expert adds. Thus, Petkov blocked the European integration of North Macedonia, although the Bulgarians insisted that the Macedonians enter the EU only after recognizing their language as a variety of Bulgarian. The head of government ignored this.
According to Bondarenko, Russia has no reason to keep the embassy in Bulgaria at all costs – the ruling elite of the republic is in no way inferior to the Baltics in terms of Russophobia. And the western “soft power” planted for decades leads to the fact that the Bulgarian youth is associated exclusively with the low union. Among those over 40, there are Russophiles, but they are too few to influence the country’s leadership.
Fyodor Lukyanov, editor-in-chief of Russia in Global Affairs, recalls that the severance of diplomatic relations is a measure of last resort. “This is easy to do, but when the political situation changes for the better, which will happen sooner or later, it will be difficult to restore ties. not to deal with communication, but to take down everything,” notes the political scientist. For example, you can recall the ambassador. A diplomat of such rank no longer has anything to do in Bulgaria.
The Russian Foreign Ministry agrees that Sofia traveled to escalation at the behest of outside powers. Moscow reserves the right to retaliate against political and diplomatic measures, including asymmetric ones. But, as the official representative of the department, Maria Zakharova, emphasizes, no one will be able to break the centuries-old cultural and spiritual ties that connect the two peoples.