Bulgaria to Reenact Burgas Terror Act in Search for Clues

Crime | December 15, 2012, Saturday // 14:22|  views

Five Israeli tourists and a Bulgarian bus driver were killed in the July 18 terrorist attack in the Bulgarian Black Sea city of Burgas. Photo by BGNES

A reenactment is going to be used in the investigation of the terror act in Bulgaria's Black Sea city of Burgas, interim Chief Prosecutor, Boyko Naydenov, informed Saturday.

Speaking for Darik radio, he reported the authorities are currently securing funds for the reenactment, with most of them already provided by the Supreme Judicial Council, VSS.

The reenactment will involve blowing up a bus to find out how exactly the attack was carried out.

Naydenov further said that a team of investigators and prosecutors works on solving the case on daily basis, interrogating witnesses and talking to any international institution that could offer some information and leads.

Meanwhile, also in an interview for Darik radio, Deputy Prime Minister and Interior Minister, Tsvetan Tsvetanov, announced that the perpetrators were three to four individuals, reiterating all of them were foreigners, who never resided in the country.

Tsvetanov restated the probe was going in the right direction and results would be made available to the public very soon, explaining the investigators now knew not only the number of people involved in the bloody act, but also the identity of some of them. He insisted once again that for the time being details must remain classified.

The Minister stressed Bulgaria was leading the investigation and until Bulgarian authorities announce their conclusions, he would abstain from offering opinions on "what other countries were saying."

He reminded that three months before the bombing in Burgas, an identical situation happened in Cyprus, but the authorities there could prevent it because, unlike Bulgarian colleagues, they had early warnings. The perpetrators spent in Bulgaria only 20 days, before the terror act, and arrived from the EU with their true ID documents while those used to register at hotels and rent cars were fake, according to Tsvetanov.

Five Israeli tourists and a Bulgarian bus driver were killed in the July 18 terrorist attack in the Bulgarian Black Sea city of Burgas. 32 Israeli tourists were injured. Israeli and American intelligence and officials largely blame Hezbollah for the attack.

However, Bulgarian officials, including the President, the Prime Minister, and the Foreign Affairs Minister, have been very wary of directly involving Hezbollah, reiterating it all depended on the findings of the ongoing investigation.

Recently, European diplomats were quoted saying that he results of Bulgaria's probe in July's bombing of an Israeli tour bus, including a possible Hezbollah lead, will be "essential" for the EU process to list the Lebanese organization as a terrorist entity.

The US included Hezbollah in the list of terrorist organizations as early as 1995.

In the eve of the recent visit of Prime Minister, Boyko Borisov, to Washington DC, and his December 3 meeting with US President, Barack Obama, the new US Ambassador in Sofia, Marcie Ries, stressed Obama was expecting to hear from Borisov the latest developments in the probe in the Burgas terror act.

Last week, US Senators Joseph Lieberman (I-CT), Bob Casey (D-PA), and James Risch (R-ID)  coauthored and submitted a resolution, urging the European Union to sanction Lebanese Hezbollah for terrorism, in the aftermath of the Burgas bombing.

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