Putin's Picture with St John Relics to Lure Russians to BulgariaTourism | November 15, 2010, Monday // 13:36| views
Russian PM Putin (middle) with Bulgarian PM Borisov paying respects to the St. John the Baptist relics in Sofia. Photo by BGNES
The homage of Russian Prime Minister, Vladimir Putin, to the relics St. John the Baptist was planned by the Bulgarian cabinet as a way to attract Russian tourists.
The relics, unearthed this summer off Sozopol on Bulgaria's southern coast and purported to be St. John the Baptist, were brought to be displayed in the capital Sofia for three days over the weekend especially to coincide with the visit of the Russian PM, according to Bulgaria's Economy and Energy Minister, Traicho Traikov,
"Imagine Putin's photograph with the relics all over Russian media and what this would mean to Russian visitors of our Black Sea coast," Traikov said Monday in an interview for the TV channel Nova Televizia.
After the end of the official energy talks in Sofia, Putin visited the St. Alexander Nevsky cathedral to pay homage to the relics and receive the blessing of Bulgarian Patriarch Maxim.
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