All-Bulgarian march for Peace and Neutrality in many Bulgarian Cities

Society | April 23, 2023, Sunday // 19:37|  views

All-Bulgarian march for peace and neutrality was held in Sofia.

The event, organized by 54 intellectuals, public figures, journalists and former representatives of the people, aims to collect enough signatures to hold a national referendum for Bulgaria to be neutral.

According to the organizers, such marches are held in 36 cities of the country.

The speakers at the tribune in front of the National Palace of Culture (NDK) in Sofia pointed out that Bulgaria should be neutral regarding the Ukrainian conflict.

The situation was calm and there was an increased police presence.

общобългарски поход мир неутралитет започна софия снимки

According to the organizers, about 12 thousand people in the capital came out to support the cause.

With shouts: "Long live Bulgaria!" the participants of the fifth consecutive March for Peace and Neutrality began to gather even before 2:00 p.m. in downtown Sofia.

Before the procession went through the central streets of Sofia, the organizers collected signatures from the citizens to organize a referendum for peace and sovereignty. There are a total of 6 questions in the survey, including: "Do you support establishing a national policy of military neutrality in relation to all conflicts external to its territory", also: "Do you support changing the requirements for the number of signatures to produce a national referendum", with over 100,000 signatures, the National Assembly must make a decision on its creation.

Speakers declared to the participants: "Do you want this land to be a paradise and for this to be decided by the Bulgarian people. And let's sign this signature and let's show those who think they are omnipresent that not they, but we rule our Bulgaria".

"Each one of you is not just an attendee or a participant in a peace march. Each one of you is now a fighter, fighting with the signature, the voice and the pen today, not to fight with the machine gun, the howitzer and the mortar tomorrow".

The march is organized by "Brod - the Bulgarian family united for children", "Bulgarian National Council for Peace", "Free and Peaceful Bulgaria" and other organizations. At the event there are representatives of the left and other political formations who support the initiative and its messages. The procession went from Vitosha Blvd. to the presidency, the building of the National Assembly, BNT, Orlov Bridge.

The resignation of the director of the television, Emil Koshlukov, was requested before BNT. According to the protesters, BNT is not fulfilling its public obligations by law, as it did not cover their protests in March. They also read a letter that they said they had sent to the management of the television in connection with this and demanded that the director of BNT be summoned to the parliament.

At 18:00 p.m., the traffic in the center of Sofia was difficult between Orlov Bridge and "Rakovski" Street, in the area of "Tsar Osvoboditel" Blvd.

The procession was scheduled to end around 20:00 p.m. in front of the Parliament building. A BNR reporter testified that after the rally in front of the BNT building on the capital's "San Stefano" street, the peace march is already over.

The next such peace march will be on May 21.

Dozens of Varna citizens signed for the organization of a National Referendum for Peace and Sovereignty during the March for Peace, called to the Municipality building in the maritime capital. To test the attitude of the Bulgarians towards the war in Ukraine and the participation of our country in any way in the conflict.

They asked for the neutrality of Bulgaria, which would preserve our independence. People carried the national flag and placards calling for peace.

Milen Sabev, who is one of the organizers of the March for Peace, explained the reasons for collecting signatures to call a referendum on peace and sovereignty:

"Bulgarian citizens do not want to participate in foreign wars. We do not participate, but we are somehow forced to donate weapons... NATO has not declared war on Russia, nor has Russia declared on NATO, so we have nothing to do with third wars".

Georgi Velikov, who is also among the organizers of the event, added: "The application was started already on Wednesday, it entered the National Assembly, today we officially start collecting the signatures".

What are the six questions: "The first 3 are related to the fact that we want to ask the people whether they want Bulgaria to take part at all in wars that are not related to us. And the second three questions are related to the will of the people if they agree to ease the requirements for convening a referendum".

With a call for peace and military neutrality of Bulgaria, dozens of people gathered in Gabrovo and confirmed with their signatures the demand for a national referendum.

About 80-90 people gathered in Gabrovo calling for Bulgaria's non-interference in the military conflict between Russia and Ukraine and holding a national referendum for peace and sovereignty. The demonstration in Gabrovo did not turn into a procession, and those who gathered stayed at the central "Vazrazhdane" square. Under Bulgarian flags, they shared their concern:

"Most people don't think that war is on our doorstep"; "Let's not enter into a war that is not ours. It is obvious that things are in this direction, any government now - whether it will be a caretaker or elected by the parliament... it has certain tasks that it will fulfill, with or without us. That's why we are here to say what we want. Because there is no one in the parliament to say it; Those people we used to go to the barracks will soon summon us under one or another pretext. And no one knows anything," said the people of Gabrovo.

One of the men, who received a summons to report to the military, commented that since he left the barracks, no one has been looking for him for 25 years, so he now connects the initiative of the military with the conflict in Ukraine.

Hundreds of people came out on "Velbazhd Square" in Kyustendil in support of the "All-Bulgarian March for Peace and Neutrality". At a rally in the square, they expressed their categorical demand that Bulgaria be outside of any participation in military conflicts, to observe consistent neutrality:

"We don't want Bulgaria to be involved in military conflicts in any way - be it with manpower or with weapons, that by moving from our country to another, we become accomplices in this war, a fratricidal war. We want peace. Together with today's March for Peace, a referendum is also initiated - to hold a national referendum on peace and sovereignty", said one of the participants in the demonstration in front of the National Radio.

Some of the demonstrators had come with their children:

"To educate our children in civic self-awareness, to understand that their destiny depends entirely on them, to understand that we are not a small country, that we are not poor, that we are not defenseless and that we do not have to depend on anyone big. Bulgaria is the oldest country in Europe, our place has always been and will be in Europe. Bulgaria is not a poor country, it is a robbed country!"

Photos: Bulgarian National Television; Bulgarian National Radio: Maria Kostova, Velina Mahlebashieva, Ivo Todorov, Yana Boyanova, Kiril Falin

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Tags: Referendum, peace, neutrality, Bulgaria


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