The Bulgarian Parliament approves a statement condemning the Russian invasion of Ukraine and backs sanctions

The Bulgarian parliament voted overwhelmingly on February 24 to adopt a declaration condemning Russia’s gross violation of international law and interference with territorial integrity through military intervention against Ukraine.

Six out of seven factions voted in favour, including the four from the government majority: We Continue the Change, the Bulgarian Socialist Party, ITN and the Democratic Bulgaria coalition, and the opposition GERB-UDF and the Movement for Rights and Freedoms.

However, the statement was voted on clause by clause, with the BSP abstaining on the point supporting sanctions.

The only faction that voted against was the smallest of parliament, which has 13 deputies in the 240-seat National Assembly: the pro-Kremlin Vuzrazhdane party.

The statement said the Bulgarian National Assembly is supporting its partners and allies in the European Union and NATO in discussing a package of measures, including sanctions, to de-escalate the conflict.

He expressed his support for the Bulgarian government to take the necessary measures commensurate with the seriousness of the challenges facing the international security architecture.

It also expressed its support for the Bulgarian government to consider and offer assistance to Ukraine, commensurate with the resources of the Bulgarian state.

The statement also supported the Bulgarian government, which insists that protecting the life and health of civilians in the region is an absolute priority to assist in obtaining immediate assistance from Bulgarian citizens and Bulgarians with Ukrainian citizenship living in Ukraine. including the need for evacuation, to help.

The statement said Parliament expects the Bulgarian government to propose and present a plan to deal with the aftermath of hostilities.

It called on Russia to immediately cease hostilities and return to full compliance with international law.

Bulgarian Prime Minister Kiril Petkov, during the debate on the statement, reiterated the government’s condemnation of the Russian invasion of Ukraine and called on Parliament to issue a clear statement on the matter.

Petkov said that there is no direct threat to Bulgaria, the government has formed 10 working groups to assess the risks in different areas.

He urged deputies to remain united on this issue and said that nobody should play political games with the question: “Either we are leaders here, or some of you have no place here,” said Petkov.

He said NATO has a variety of options regarding sanctions and how severe they should be is being debated. Not imposing sanctions is not an option, he said.

Petkov said he would fly to Brussels on the night of February 24 for a European Council meeting and European leaders would present a joint statement.

At 4 p.m., the National Assembly began a closed-door hearing of line ministers and defense and intelligence chiefs on the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

(Photo: Clive Leviev-Sawyer)

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