Disgruntled Bulgarians Gear Up for Tomato Rally in front of Parliament

Domestic | November 24, 2012, Saturday // 10:56|  views

The Parliament building in Sofia, photo by Sofia Photo Agency

Disgruntled Bulgarians will stage a "tomato rally" Saturday afternoon in front of Parliament in support of arrested dissident Nikolay Kolev, also known as 'Bosiya' (Barefoot).

The protest organized via Facebook is scheduled for 5 p.m. with over 1200 confirmed attendees so far out of over 22 000 invited.

According to unofficial reports, Bulgaria's Interior Ministry has set up emergency headquarters to handle the threat and a squad of 300 police officers is expected to be deployed against the demonstrators.

The Facebook event is titled "Tomato revolution" and insists that only a "Tomatina" can bring Bulgarian politicians to their senses.

The protesters threaten that they will gather in front of the Parliament building in downtown Sofia with or without permission to throw tomatoes and various kinds of vegetables at the building.

Bulgarian dissident, poet and publicist Nikolay Kolev- Bosiya was arrested in Sofia on Tuesday by a squad of more than 40 police officers after throwing a single tomato at the Parliament building to protest rampant official corruption.

Bosiya recently sent a letter to the Parliament, the President, the Prime Minister, the Supreme Judicial Council, the Bulgarian National Television, and the Bulgarian National Radio, warning that he will throw tomatoes at their buildings because he believed them responsible for the widespread corruption, crime, and lack of media freedom in Bulgaria.

He also specified the date and the order of his "tomato assaults," saying he would start with the Parliament building at 10 am Tuesday.

Kolev may face up to two years in prison over the protest.

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Tags: Bulgarian Parliament, tomato, protest, Nikolay Kolev, corruption


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