Bulgarian Nationalist Leader: Staging Roadblocks Equals Terrorism

Domestic | July 1, 2013, Monday // 18:14|  views

Volen Siderov, leader of Bulgarian nationalist party Ataka, photo by BGNES

Volen Siderov, leader of Bulgarian nationalist party Ataka, has called for Penal Code amendments defining roadblocks as a serious crime.

Speaking at a press conference on Monday, Siderov argued that clogging arterial roads was to be treated as an act of terrorism rather than petty hooliganism.

Siderov, as cited by dnevnik.bg, made clear that the nationalist party planned to initiate amendments stipulating increased penalties for breach of public order during protests and blockades of road arteries, bridges, airports and railway stations.

Citing the 30-minute roadblock staged by some 50 anti-government protesters on Sunday at the Brussels Blvd in Sofia, he said that the police officers who had redirected traffic instead of removing protesters had to be penalized.

He claimed that protesters violating the Rallies and Demonstrations Act by blocking traffic without prior warning threatened the life and health of Bulgarian citizens and terrorized them.

Siderov suggested that the existing fine of BGN 50-300 for public nuisance during protests was highly insufficient because protesters were paid as much to take part in rallies.

He said that Ataka would initiate Penal Code amendments under which the offence of blocking road arteries, bridges, etc would be listed as a serious crime punishable by at least 3 years of imprisonment.

Siderov also accused Sofia Mayor Yordanka Fandakova of failing to take steps to penalize protesters for breach of public order.

He said that he was ready to propose a member of Ataka to replace Interior Minister Tsvetelin Yovchev and take steps immediately to restore public order.

Siderov's statement comes after 17 days of anti-government protests in Bulgaria.

The demonstrations were triggered by the appointment of notorious media mogul Delyan Peevski as Chair of the State Agency for National Security (DANS), but the reversal of the move did not suffice to appease public discontent and the people went on to demand the resignation of the socialist-led cabinet over ties with oligarchs.

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Tags: Volen Siderov, Ataka, nationalist party, protests, penal code, Plamen Oresharski, Bulgarian government, State Agency for National Security, DANS, terrorism, Sofia Mayor, Yordanka Fandakova, Interior Minsiter, Tsvetelin Yovchev


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