Bulgaria's Interior Secretary: Police Are No Ballerinas

Domestic | February 18, 2012, Saturday // 13:02|  views

Kalin Georgiev, Chief Secretary of the Interior Minister, has reiterated that the widespread allegations of police brutality are a myth. Photo by dariknews.bg

Asked to comment on the growing public discontent over cases of police brutality in Bulgaria, Kalin Georgiev, Chief Secretary of the Interior Minister has claimed that police officers are executing their duties in accordance with the law.

"The employees of the Interior Ministry are no ballerinas. When they are provoked by arrogance, words or actions, the action has its consequences. The police response, however, needs to be measured and proportionate," Georgiev said in an interview for private TV channel bTV on Saturday.

He emphasized that no case of police officers using excessive force had been hushed up and vowed that his subordinates would become more polite and better qualified.

Georgiev explained that if the lack of intelligence had been compensated by muscle power in the past, this was no longer allowed to happen.

"This is the case now because the Interior is a function of society and we are a representative sample of this society," he argued.

Regarding the latest case of alleged police brutality against Ilia Iliev, a musician at a famous show band, the Chief Secretary of the Interior was adamant that the troops of the General Directorate for Combating Organized Crime (GDBOP) had acted proportionately and amid an "urgent necessity".

Georgiev also reminded his audience that Bulgarian citizens were obliged to assist the police, which was also indicated at the back of the identification cards of the police officers.

He went on to say that vehicular manslaughter ought to be considered a grave crime entailing a serious penalty, rather than suspended sentence or probation.

Georgiev specified that the legal provisions concerning vehicular manslaughter would be discussed at a round table in Parliament on Monday.

Asked to say how often he had been on the brink of filing his resignation, he said that, "unfortunately", he had no pockets on the suit he was wearing to demonstrate.

"My salary goes directly towards power bills and rent. Apart from that, I go to hospital at least once a year," Georgiev stated, responding to a question about what would happen if he lost his job.

He rejected allegations that he had held talks about his appointment at the State Agency for National Security (DANS).

"If such rumors are going around, they are the fruit of the imagination of a number of people," Georgiev insisted.

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Tags: Kalin Georgiev, interior ministry, Chief Secretary of the Interior Ministry, police brutality, traffic accidents, suspended sentence, probation, General Direction for Combating Organized Crime, GDBOP, State Agency for National Security, DANS


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