Bulgarian PM Denies Ex-Customs Official's Political Pressure Accusations

Domestic | January 28, 2011, Friday // 13:18|  views

Bulgaria's Prime Minister Boyko Borisov and oppositional Bulgarian Socialist Party MP Korneliya Ninova. Photo by BGNES

There is no truth in the letter of a former Bulgarian customs official accusing the government of political pressure, according to Bulgaria's Prime Minister Boyko Borisov.

"If the letter contained facts, than the Prosecutor's Office should have taken some measures, as the Chief Prosecutor has also received it," the Prime Minister stated from the parliamentary tribune on Friday, upon being asked to explain the accusations by the oppositional Bulgarian Socialist Party MP, Korneliya Ninova.

In a letter, which Deputy Head of the Bulgarian Customs Agency Antoni Strandzhev addressed to Prime Minister Boyko Borisov and the Bulgarian Prosecutors Office, he stated that there have been attempts for political appointments in the Customs Agency, which the agency's administration has interrupted. In Strandzhev's words, this has resulted in political pressure.

Bulgaria's so-called "spy" scandal erupted at the end of 2010, when three tapes of discrediting conversations between Tanov, and his superiors – Finance Minister Simeon Djankov and Deputy Finance Minister Vladislav Goranov were released by the controversial Galeria weekly. Strandzhev is also featured in one of the conversations.

The scandal then expanded to include two Members of the Parliament from the ruling GERB party, which have allegedly tried to lobby for political appointments in the Customs Office.

Galeria is believed to be the mouthpiece of Aleksei Petrov, former special agent of the State National Security Agency DANS, (currently under house arrest), who has been investigated on organized crime charges since his detention in the much advertised "Operation Octopus" in February 2010.

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Tags: political appointments, Alexey Petrov, Galeria, GERB, Vanyo Tanov, conversations, spy, Boyko Borisov, Antoni Strandzhev, Korneliya Ninova


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