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News from Bulgaria / Oct 9, 95

From: bulgaria@access1.digex.net (Embassy of Bulgaria)

Bulgarian Telegraph Agency Directory

EMBASSY OF THE REPUBLIC OF BULGARIA - WASHINGTON D.C.

BTA - BULGARIAN TELEGRAPH AGENCY


CONTENTS

  • [01] BULGARIA NOT INVOLVED IN ASSAULT AGAINST MACEDONIAN PRESIDENT

  • [02] MEETING OF PRESIDENT ZHELYU ZHELEV WITH BULGARIAN AMBASSADORS IN SOUTHEASTERN EUROPE

  • [03] HUNGARIAN PRESIDENT IN BULGARIA

  • [04] VIDENOV AT THE CEI ASSOCIATION COUNCIL

  • [05] KOZLODUI NUCLEAR POWER PLANT

  • [06] PARLIAMENT PROTESTS AGAINST EU BLACKLIST

  • [07] FRIDAY NEWS BRIEFS

  • [08] BUSINESS PRESS

  • [09] SOCCER


  • [01] BULGARIA NOT INVOLVED IN ASSAULT AGAINST MACEDONIAN PRESIDENT

    Sofia , 6 October 1995

    Dailies frontpage yesterday's statement of Bulgarian Interior Minister Lyubomir Nachev that Bulgaria is not involved in the assassination attempt against Macedonian President Kiro Gligorov. The Interior Minister made the statement after a closed-door sitting of the cabinet. "Novinar" quotes National Intelligence Service (NIS) chief Brigo Asparouhov as saying the NIS is sure no Bulgarians are involved in the assault.

    Allegations about a "Bulgarian connection" in the assassination attempt are absolutely groundless and constitute an obvious provocation, "24 Chassa" writes, quoting an official statement of Foreign Ministry Spokesman Radko Vlaikov. No single person or political force in Bulgaria have any interest in the assault, this daily quotes BSP deputy leader Georgi Purvanov as saying. The security services of Bulgaria and Macedonia have agreed on joint action for catching the four Macedonian citizens suspected in the assault, "Standart News" writes.

    [02] MEETING OF PRESIDENT ZHELYU ZHELEV WITH BULGARIAN AMBASSADORS IN SOUTHEASTERN EUROPE

    Sofia, October 7 (BTA)

    Regional stability and cooperation between Balkan countries were high on the agenda of the first meeting of President Zhelyu Zhelev with Bulgarian ambassadors in Southeastern Europe and officials of the Bulgarian Foreign Ministry. The sides discussed specific opportunities for Bulgaria's participation in the restoration of the countries in the region after the end of the Yugoconflict, and reviewed Bulgaria's relations with these countries, Presidential Spokesman Valentin Stoyanov said after the meeting.

    Special attention was paid to the chances for expanding cooperation through the launch of major infrastructure projects such as the East-West and NorthSouth transport corridors, Stoyanov also said.

    Deputy Foreign Minister Ivan Hristov reportedly briefed the diplomats on the cabinet's stand on Balkan countries' bilateral and multilateral relations. "It [the stand] includes aspects of Bulgaria's traditional policy, which, Bulgarian diplomats believe, is the most civilized one in Europe," the Presidential Spokesman went on to say.

    The meeting was attended by all invited Bulgarian ambassadors based in Balkan countries, and such meetings are likely to be held on a regular basis in the future, said Stoyanov.

    [03] HUNGARIAN PRESIDENT IN BULGARIA

    Sofia, October 8 (BTA) - The visit here by Hungarian President Arpad Goncz at the invitation of Bulgarian President Zhelyu Zhelev will not be assessed only in terms of the bilateral documents likely to be signed, but rather in terms of the discussions on problems familiar to the two countries, BTA was told by the Foreign Policy Advisor to the President, Kamen Velichkov.

    Concerting the efforts of the two countries for accession to the European Union where they both are associate members, and to NATO, and Bulgaria's desire to join the Central European Initiative, where Hungary is full member, will be focal international issues at the talks between the two countries'Heads of State. The sides will also discuss the settlement of Bulgaria's liabilities to Hungary, although this country has already settled part of the deficit in its trade with Hungary.

    The future free trade zone between the two countries will also be atop the agenda, since both Sofia and Budapest are ready to open negotiations for a bilateral agreement to that end.

    Specific economic problems will be discussed in more details with representatives of the executive, but they will not be skirted at the talks between two Presidents, Kamen Velichkov went on to say. Two intergovernmental conventions - on veterinary services and on plant protection - are now being drafted and are likely to be signed during the visit. Following a period of stagnation, an upward trend has been observable in bilateral trade since 1994, when the commercial exchange amounted to some USD 55 million.

    Presidents Zhelev and Goncz are also expected to discuss the Yugoconflict, the expected beginning of the peace process, and embargo-related losses. "Talks on this matter will stress on what is ahead of us after the end of the war and particularly the compensations the two countries are hoping to get for the losses they have sustained," this Presidential Advisor also said.

    [04] VIDENOV AT THE CEI ASSOCIATION COUNCIL

    Warsaw, October 7 (BTA) Today's political decision is high assessment of Bulgaria's role in European integration processes, Bulgarian Prime Minister Zhan Videnov said after the end of the session of the Central European Initiative (CEI) Association Council.

    The heads of government and foreign ministers of the 15 countries that participated in the two-day session, adopted a closing communique stating that the five CEI associated members - Albania, Belarus, Bulgaria, Romania and Ukraine should be admitted as full members to the organization. A decision to that effect will be taken at the meeting of CEI foreign ministers due this spring.

    According to Prime Minister Videnov, international organizations are demonstrating an involvement in Bulgaria's efforts to change. In his address at the forum in Warsaw the Bulgarian Head of Government stressed the need for efforts for stabilize and revitalize the Balkans after the end of the conflict in Bosnia-Hercegovina, through the launch of infrastructure projects. Bulgaria is interested in participating in several transport projects, Zhan Videnov told the forum enlisting the projects he referred to. He voiced hope for success of the upcoming workshop on infrastructure projects due in November in Sofia under the programme of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe.

    [05] KOZLODUI NUCLEAR POWER PLANT

    Vratsa, October 7 (BTA correspondent) - Power Unit One of the Kozlodui Nuclear Power Plant, on the Danube, last night was plugged into the national power grid. At 1:00 a.m. the 440 MW power unit worked at 30% capacity. Operation tests will continue and only then will the capacity of the power unit be increased to 50%. The tests are proceeding normally.

    [06] PARLIAMENT PROTESTS AGAINST EU BLACKLIST

    All national dailies give prominence to a protest declaration, adopted by the National Assembly yesterday, which urges dropping Bulgaria from a list of nations whose citizens need visas to cross the European Union's internal borders. The list was approved by the EU Justice and Home Affairs Council on September 25, 1995. "Ministers and ambassadors slept through the visa guillotine," "24 Chassa" says. "The EU decision is a political sanction against the Bulgarian Government," Vassil Gotsev, Deputy Floor Leader of the largest opposition force, the Union of Democratic Forces (UDF), says in an interview for the UDF daily "Demokratsiya".

    Vassil Mihailov MP of the UDF, caused a procedural dispute degenerating into a fist fight, "Continent" writes in a front page article. "MPs Fight Over Blacklist," says the headline of the leader in "Standart News". "Dr Mihailov became a gravedigger of the European and NATO cause. Every time he takes the floor voters comes to hate the West more and more," "24 Chassa" writes in an editorial commentary.

    "With their behaviour during the debates of the declaration, the MPs proved that Bulgaria is indeed a 'high-risk country', a signed commentary in "Continent" reads. "Douma", the daily of the ruling Bulgarian Sociliast Party (BSP), describes the rows in Parliament yesterday as typical for Bugaria. The MPs offered voters election propaganda, scandals and curses, rather than national consensus, the author of an article in "Pari" writes. "Instead of taking a unified stance, the MPs demonstrated partisan obstinacy and politicizing," "Troud" writes in a front page story headlined "We Deserve to Be In the Blacklist".

    [07] FRIDAY NEWS BRIEFS

    Sofia, October 6 (BTA) - Today the number of parliamentary groups was reduced from five to four. According to the Rules of Procedure of the National Assembly, the parliamentary group of the Bulgarian Business Bloc (BBB) no longer exists after three of its members left it yesterday, National Assembly Chairman Blagovest Sendov said at the beginning of today's parliamentary sitting. Holding 13 seats until some months ago when one of the MPs left the group, the BBB was the fourth largest force in Parliament. The minimum number of MPs required to set up a parliamentary group is 10.

    Parliament adopted an insurance bill on first reading. By their vote, the MPs approved two versions: one submitted by the Council of Ministers and the other one by Ventseslav Dimitrov, MP of the Popular Union. During the debate part of the MPs took a stand against the requirement for a minimum capital of 200 million leva insurance companies should have under the bill.

    Some voiced their opinion that the 10-year moratorium on the operation of foreign insurance companies in Bulgaria, as envisaged in the bill, was too long.

    Parliament proceeded with the adoption of the higher education bill on second reading.

    [08] BUSINESS PRESS

    Sofia, October 6 (BTA) - By the end of September budget deficit accounted for 95.7 per cent of the projected figure, "Pari" writes referring to a Finance Ministry message. The deficit increased by 4,844 million leva in September adding up to 46,650 million leva, the paper says. (One US dollar exchanges for 68.070 leva now.)

    The ministries are drafting suggestions for Bulgaria's participation in the reconstruction of Bosnia and Herzegovina, "24 Chassa" writes quoting a message of Transport Minister Stamen Stamenov. Bulgarian companies will take part in auctions for the construction of bridges, roads and buildings; the construction will be funded by the world financial institutions, Minister Stamenov added.

    The expected inflation for January-September is 23 per cent, "Troud" writes, referring to a report of the National Pricing Committee, released yesterday. According to unnamed experts, the September inflation is about 4.6 - 4.8 per cent, the paper says.

    The figures are also published by "Demokratsiya".

    [09] SOCCER

    Sofia, October 7 (BTA) - Bulgaria beat Albania 3-0 in a qualifier for the 1996 European football championship here today.

    The nearly full stands saw the first half end 1-0 with the first goal scored by Yordan Lechkov in the 13th min. Emil Kostadinov added two more goals in the 80th and 82th min. 80th and 82th min.

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