Bulgaria's Ruling Party Leader Compares Crimea to Kurdjali

Politics | March 19, 2014, Wednesday // 17:10|  views

Bulgarian Socialist Party's Leader, Sergei Stanishev

We should consider a situation in which a secession referendum is held in Bulgaria's city of Kurdjali.

Sergei Stanishev, Bulgarian ruling party's leader, made these comments for Bulgaria's Trud newspaper, immediately provoking the outrage of MPs from both the ehtnic Turkish Movement of Rights and Freedoms (DPS), which is in the government, and center-right opposition GERB, Dnevnik.bg has reported.

Stanishev, who raised the "hypothesis" in relation to Monday's secession of Crimea from Ukraine and its annexation to Russia, was referring to a Southern Bulgarian city located in a region where a large ethnic Turkish minority has lived for centuries.

His remarks expectedly sparked controversy, with DPS allies warning against making ill-grounded claims.

The opposition party GERB threatened to file a complaint to the State Agency for National Security (DANS) and called on Stanishev to explain further his words.

The DPS's leader, Lyutvi Mestan, asserted that "no Bulgarian citizen has denied to unconditionally accept the Republic's territorial integrity, sovereignty and state borders".

He was adamant that nothing in Bulgaria could lead to Crimea-style referendums.

In the interview, Stanishev used the widely criticized scenario to justify his position that the situation on the peninsula must be assessed more carefully, considering their possible consequences at a regional level.

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Tags: Sergei Stanishev, Kurdjali, Crimea, Russia, Lyutvi Mestan


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