Against the backdrop of the war in Ukraine, there are political leaders in Bulgaria denying Russian aggression. And after a year and a half of terror and territorial grabbing to call what is happening a conflict. Such is the Governor of Pazardzhik Trendafil Velichkov. A man of President Rumen Radev, who as we understand from his participation on July 10, 2023 has many friends in Russia and is fighting for Global Peace.
In the tone of the propaganda coming from the Kremlin, Mr Velichkov maintains his firm public tone against people of different sexuality. The same Trendaphil Velichkov, during the Pride in the capital of Bulgaria, came up with the position of the Bulgarian Orthodox Church that different sexuality is a mortal sin and a mental deviation.
Taking the position that LGBTQ propaganda should be banned in schools in Bulgaria. Given that Bulgarian schools are extremely conservative anyway and have long taught a creed that is based on Orthodoxy without regard for alternative religious beliefs.
Bulgaria on Wednesday, 19/04/2023 became the latest European country to temporarily ban the import of Ukrainian grain and other agricultural produce following protests from local farmers, excluding goods in transit destined for export. Agriculture Minister Yavor Gechev told reporters that Sofia is following the example of fellow European Union members Poland, Hungary, and Slovakia, adding that Bulgaria’s market was “really saturated enough with crops. Our own production is worth billions, and we believe it will be difficult to sell, so we will suffer serious losses unless we take measures” Gechev said. What the Bulgarian minister does not say is that the only route for Ukrainian grain remains through the ports of Odessa, which depend on Russia's will. This puts a huge bidding chip in the hands of the Kremlin for manipulation and extortion. Bulgaria mulls ban on Ukrainian grain as EU slams Poland, Hungary – EURACTIV.com
Minister Yavor Gechev is one of the leaders of the Socialist Youth, an organization from which many of today's leaders in Bulgarian politics come. One of Yavor's closest associates is the Governor of Pazardzhik, Trendafil Velichkov.
Trendafil Velichkov is a politician, twice Regional Governor of Pazardzhik, candidate for mayor of Pazardzhik, one of the few Bulgarian politicians to have been on working meetings in Russia and met Putin, journalist, TV producer, with a business in telecommunications, started his glamorous career from TV 7. Television, part of the biggest bank failure and fraud related to state funds KTB. Television, part of the media portfolio of the media and orthodox Russian oligarch with an exclusive interest in Bulgaria Malofeev. The media group has spawned a series of successful patriotic and nationalist politicians and public figures in Bulgaria. Trendaphil Velichkov is also one of the leaders of the Bulgarian Socialist Party's Youth Movement, as well as one of the leaders of Rumen Radev and Georgi Parvanov's pro-Russian ABV Party.
ABV the party that was the mainstay of GERB and the so-called Bulgarian Right
In 2014 ABV, the party of President Georgi Parvanov, nominated by the Bulgarian Socialists, supported the party of the then right-wing pro-Western reformists GERB of Boyko Borissov, thus de facto saving his government. A few years later, the same thing was done by the then patriotic and nationalist formations united under the name United Patriots (parties that ideologically and in embryo belong to the ideology coming from Moscow). In 2023, on the way to do the same was the party We Continue the Change, also launched by President (Rumen Radev) nominated by the Bulgarian Socialists.
Rumen Petkov (pictured), who is the chairman of the ABV Party, is one of the most controversial figures in contemporary Bulgarian history. On February 10, 2006, Ambassador Byerly reported to the State Department on one of the most complex personalities in Bulgarian politics, then-Minister of the Interior Rumen Petkov. "The pragmatic Petkov maintains good connections across the political spectrum: from Boyko Borissov on the right, to the hard left in the BSP, to representatives of the State Duma, passing through the MRF. As the BSP's campaign manager and finance officer, he is inevitably associated with accusations of corruption and links to organised crime, but "his modest lifestyle suggests he did it for the party rather than for personal enrichment", says Byerly. "Under Petkov, there has been no progress in prosecuting organized crime. The country's five largest organised crime groups - TIM, VIS, SIC, Nove Holding and Multigroup - continue to operate with impunity. Petkov has long been linked to Russians who are either directly or indirectly linked to Russian intelligence." Wikileaks: Румен Петков арестуван за уриниране във фонтан Mind the horns! (bivol.bg)
Together with the Director of Russian Foreign Intelligence Naryshkin, who is also the President of the Russian Historical Society.
The Great Lawyer of Russia
"...You cannot crush Bulgaria with the insane sanctions against Russia, turn our homeland into a buffer for the refugee pressure, stop a number of projects and crush small and medium businesses to accommodate transnational corporations here..."-
One of the main public critics of President Rosen Plevenliev on his comments on Russian aggression in Crimea.
One of the main pillars of Russophilism in Pazardzhik.
Russian Field Marshal in Bulgaria Mitrofanova in August, 2021 unveils Monument to the Russian Liberator in Pazardzhik, EU.
Patriot, Slavophile and Orthodox, who was one of the main defenders against Islamists in politics. He had personally addressed all state law enforcement institutions related to national security about the danger of the islamists:
As during the first reign of Trendaphil Velichkov as District Governor in Pazardzhik the biggest Islamophobic scandal in the new Bulgarian history has flared up.
The young Socialist Politician, called Che Gavera in the ranks of the Socialist Party (the former Communist Party) is a staunch patron of Orthodoxy, especially its tilt towards Russia:
Definitely with the coming to power of the District Governor Trendafil Velichkov, Pazardzhik acquired a much more Patriotic, Orthodox and Historically Slavic oriented outlook.
At the celebrations and holy mass on the occasion of the liberation of Bulgaria "from Turkish slavery", thanks to Russia, 03/03/2023.
On the left of the Governor is one of the founders of the new Historical Society in Pazardzhik, the librarian Marin Ivanov. History Clubs, Historical Myths and Nostalgia for the Soviet Union (theangel.today)
On the Governor's right is his associate and companion from the Governor's home village of Tsrancha- Bulgarian Socialist Party activist and MP candidate Georgi Yankulov. Putin Influencers- Much more than Troll Farm (theangel.today)
Like other movements that mixed Nationalism and Socialism, Trendaphil Velichkov was at the heart of the Torch Youth and Religious Processions. Which most likely educate Putin style Ethno Nationalism.
In general, the vision of Pazardzhik during Trendafil Velichkov resembles the Russian vision of the Pan Slavic Orthodox World. The event is from 2022 in Crimea:
Together with the other top socialist and Russophile from Pazardzhik- Minister of Social Welfare Nadia Klisurska (daughter of the mayor of Pazardzhik from the Bulgarian Communist Party (later renamed socialist) from the beginning of the transition)Together with the other top socialist and Russophile from Pazardzhik- Minister of Social Welfare Nadia Klisurska (daughter of the mayor of Pazardzhik from the Bulgarian Communist Party (later rechristened socialist) from the beginning of the transition). Minister appointed by President Rumen Radev, in charge of multi-billion funds to recover from the EU COVID crisis. Nadia Klisurska- A very social story of what it is to be a Socialist from Pazardzhik (theangel.today)
In the Bulgarian Socialist Party he is known by the nickname Che Gavera. As he was the man who lit the star on the Sistine Chapel of Socialism- Buzludzha, after decades of destruction.
Corruption and the Business Promoting Moscow in Bulgaria
Georgi Delchev is a business oligarch from Pazardzhik who is the man behind most important things related to Russia in Pazardzhik. He is also the man who finances the Russian Club in Pazardzhik, part of the Bulgarian-Russian Children's Para Military Organization Vityazi Khan Asparuh.(Child Soldiers- Para Military Bulgarian Russian Organization from Pazardzhik (theangel.today)) He is a man who receives much of his funding from state-related contracts. Here's the media coverage of the latest million received by Governor Trendafil Velichkov:
The District Administration of Pazardzhik announced that the right bank of the Maritza River was strengthened for the first time in eight years. The project involved the restoration of destroyed retaining walls and strengthening of the right bank of the river, with the contractor Eco Hydro-90 Ltd. with manager Georgi Delchev and Delchev Engineering Ltd. with manager Ivan Delchev. The project was awarded a value of 991 867.88 BGN including VAT, provided by the Interdepartmental Commission for Reconstruction and Assistance to the Council of Ministers. The work included the construction of a protective dike, bottom sills, and a State Acceptance Committee to approve and accept the works.
The project was the second strengthening of the river bank in Pazardzhik, following the first one in 2016. The first was done by two booms at the end of 2014 and the beginning of 2015. The contractor was Eco Hydro-90 Ltd., initially paid by the Municipality of Pazardzhik and later received it from the Interdepartmental Commission for Disasters and Emergencies. After the work was completed, Eco Hydro-90 received 19 times more money than the state-owned Irrigation Systems for "saving" Pazardzhik from flooding.
The Interdepartmental Commission for Reconstruction and Assistance to the Council of Ministers adopted additional proposals for approval of earmarked funding for the works carried out by Eco-Hydro 90 Ltd. in the beds of the Topolnitsa and Luda Yana rivers. The work consists of the construction of protection dikes to stop or limit the collapse of the river banks and the deepening of individual sections of the river beds to facilitate the passage of water volumes through them. The Committee's document contains errors in points 1 and 3, as the river Topolkovo passes through Pischigovo. Luda Yana, not r. Topolnitsa. The approved amounts for Eco-Hydro 90's work are hardly any errors. The company will receive a total of BGN 370,000 for its work, but the decision states that the payment is partial, up to 50% of the necessary costs. The commission has only paid part of the funds, but a decision will be taken to transfer the remaining 370,000 BGN. Settlement with Eco-Hydro 90 will be a priority, as the work was completed in 2015. Delchevi's company will receive a total of BGN 740,000 for the three sites. The difference in payment is 19 times in favor of Delchevi's company, which raises questions about the regional disaster and emergency committee's Chairman, Trendafil Velichkov. The district governor declined to provide information on the requested amount of money for the three sites after declaring a state of emergency on 26 March 2015.
Key figure in The National- Socialist Movement Bulgaria
The youth movement of the Bulgarian Socialist Party has created many strong friendships and alliances, such is the friendship between the former chairman of the Red Youth and current Minister of Agriculture Yavor Gechev and the District Governor of Pazardzhik Trendafil Velichkov(journalist, media expert, PR, producer). But the important thing is what ideas the young socialists, heirs of the guerrilla movement and the Red underground resistance until the coming to power of Communism in 1944, preached. Because if there is a political ideology that is Anti-Systemic in its Essence in Bulgaria, it is the Bulgarian Socialist Party (the former Communist Party).
22/03/2023 "Today we are putting on public discussion the regulation that gives traceability of imported food throughout the chain for quality, quantity and prices," Agriculture Minister Yavor Gechev told Nova TV today. He explained that the system will monitor the path of all imported food to the Bulgarian consumer, including grains, fruits and vegetables. Such a register would help in the event of a signal of unsafe food, as well as facilitate control over traders. Gechev noted that oilseed sunflower and grain, which enter the EU unhindered from Ukraine, "unbalance the market and undercut both prices and demand" for Bulgarian products. "Yes, we are a country in solidarity with Ukraine, but the price paid by Bulgaria and Bulgarian farmers is extremely high," he stressed.
On 29/03/2023 the Minister of Agriculture of Bulgaria personally headed a protest of Native producers against the EU and Ukraine. Understanding that this goes against all EU rules, he stressed that he wants harsh measures for Ukrainian produce, which only has to pass through Bulgaria in full transit.
At the same time, the minister said that farmers receive 213 million levs of state aid because of the war in Ukraine. Земеделските стопани получават 213 млн. лв. държавна помощ заради войната в Украйна (24chasa.bg)
The agriculture minister also explained how the state will fight unfair trade practices. "When the price difference between the producer and the seller is more than 25% of the gross price or 10% of the net price, they will have to notify the CPC and the CPC beforehand about this higher margin," said Yavor Gechev. He specified that meetings with the representatives of the food chains in the country are yet to be held on the issue of the price ceiling.
22/03/2023 The Commission for the Protection of Competition is investigating suspicious cartel practices among large retail chains. Several unannounced inspections are being carried out at the offices of hypermarket chains (4 big German chains, Metro, Lidl, Kaufland and Bila, operate in Bulgaria), companies and their associations related to the production and trade of basic foodstuffs in the country, the commission said.The unannounced inspections, accompanied by police seizures of documents and correspondence, which should provide clarity on trade practices in foodstuffs because of the significant price increases.
23/03/2023 Antimonopoly Commission initiates three collusion proceedings against grocery chains It is specified that the inspection is against the companies that operate the stores of the chains "Bila", "Kaufland", "Fantastico", "Metro", "Promarket" and "T-market", as well as against the associations "Associations for Modern Trade", "Union of Poultry Farmers", "Association of Industrial Production", "Association of Milk Processors in Bulgaria and "National Association of Milk Processors.
The shocking thing in this case is that this rush to a planned state-regulated economy, in complete contradiction to the WTO and the EU, is accepted as perfectly normal even by media outlets that are bullied for their pro-Western positions.
There are Four Fundamental Freedoms in the EU(rules the EU needs to exist). Free movement of people, goods, services and capital. The freedom of movement of goods in the EU means the removal of all restrictions on the supply of goods within the EU. This freedom applies to all goods originating in a Member State as well as to goods originating in a third country but circulating freely in a Member State. The impermissible restrictions on this free movement of goods are of two types - tariff - duties or charges having equivalent effect to a duty and quantitative restrictions and any other measures having a similar effect: quotas, differences in technical requirements, packaging standards, labels and........
The TFEU (Treaty on the Functioning of the EU) prohibits all quantitative restrictions and measures having equivalent effect on the movement of goods between Member States.
22/03/2023 opening of a Hunting Fair, hosted by the Russian Honorary Consul in Bulgaria, Georgi Gergov in his Fair Plovdiv. The event is opened by the Governor of Pazardzhik Trendafil Velichkov.
Celebration of the 9th of May, the Victory Day of the Red Army, 2022 in Plovdiv- Russian Honorary Consul and Russian Ambassador
The regional governor of Pazardzhik, Trendafil Velichkov, was the third person in the hierarchy of the political project ABV of former President Georgi Parvanov and former top police officer Rumen Petkov, known for being the closest person in Bulgaria to the Russian ambassador Mitrofanova. "Не ви казваме "сбогом": Срещите на Румен Петков и Митрофанова - галерия - Булевард България (boulevardbulgaria.bg)
The Hunter at the head of Pazardzhik
Trendaphil Velichkov has shared that he is proud of one thing and that is that (before he became District Governor) he was a member of the Board of LRD "Sokol 1893" - Pazardzhik. At first glance, it sounds quite idealistic, but in reality hunting and fishing, behind their apparent ordinariness are extremely interesting.
Pictured is the hunting party of the dictator Todor Zhivkov, among them are the biggest names of Bulgarian culture during Communism. Lyubomir Levchev, Emilian Stanev, Yordan Radichkov, Velichko Minekov, Gen. Hristo Ruskov, Todor Zhivkov, academician Angel Balevski, Georgi Dzhagarov, Hristo Neykov, Svetlin Rusev, Milko Balev, Gen. Iliya Kashev. The hunt is the Elite Club of Communism.
The hunting farms of the communist era are in the hands of the communist elite for two reasons. Firstly, it is a huge, well-knit social network in which political affiliations don't work, and everyone is a satrap with a gun. There are 160,000 hunters in Bulgaria, with 184,000 registered guns, and a population of 5.5 million, a huge figure, with unpredictable political potential. Second is the financial benefits, and they are enormous. Starting with the bases and the adjacent land and forests, worth hundreds of millions. And in addition come the uncontrollable Euro programs that actually fund the same communist elites.
For the financial benefits, the Herald is doing an investigation. A central figure in the investigation is Yavor Gechev, the closest friend of Trendaphil Velichkov from the time of the Young Socialist Party. And even Trendaphil announced in social networks that they will make BSP 3. The scheme is to siphon off tens of millions in Euro funding.
New scheme: 60 million BGN stolen from farmers, money goes to hunting oligarchs :
"An interesting scheme for the rich is currently spinning. In the name of Agriculture Minister Yavor Gechev, middlemen are knocking on the door of every known millionaire in Bulgaria. The offer they offer is - you pay 3 euros per hectare for a consulting service - and you get a free hunting field at the moment! Then you outline it for a subsidy and get up to 65 BGN/ha supposedly to feed the wild animals.
In return for the service of getting a free hunting field, you have to return 20% of the total amount for the field for the consultancy fee- how in general coruption works in Bulgaria. The money earmarked for Bulgaria under this euro scheme totals 60 million leva.
Does and how much of the "fee" money reach the Agriculture Minister Yavor Gechev?
The scandalous offers that are currently raining among the rich in Sofia are a continuation of the scandals that have rocked the Ministry of Agriculture with the new Strategic Plan for Support of Farmers that they have drafted. Many organizations have long warned of this danger - funds from farmers will go to the hunting oligarchs! There were also protests on the subject. But nobody paid attention to the farmers.
While the rich people who rent hunting fields for pleasure will be able to take millions supposedly to feed the game, the farmers who produce the wheat for the bread of the people will get only £20/acre. However, the scheme is on. The Ordinance under which the farmers will apply has also been written.
Already a secret auction is going on to lease out the vacant hunting fields to divert millions of leva from the farmers to the hunting oligarchs."
Pencho Kubadinsky's(Top Communist Official and friend of communist dictator Jivkov) hunting activities led to the creation of dozens of hunting farms and hunting reserves. Some of them are in the forests of old hunting forests of tsarist Bulgaria, building new lodges there. When Zhivkov became keen on hunting in the 1960s, he gradually started building entirely new hunting farms, with fenced forest areas, along the Danube, by the sea, in the Balkan Mountains, the Rhodope Mountains, Vitosha, etc., literally in all parts of Bulgaria - "Kormisosh", "Voden", "Mazalat", "Pravets", "Vitinya", "Balchik", "Ropotamo", "Iskar", etc. But because of Zhivkov, some of the hunting spots became hunting residences, completely closed to the upper echelon of power. Luxury chalets were built for their time, with more amenities and presidential apartments. No hunters of any kind were allowed there, the territory and the game were reserved for high hunting. The staff is from the UBO or at the behest of the security service. The hunting residences are only a fraction of the total number of newly built residences in Bulgaria in the Zhivkov era. There are so many that if Zhivkov spent a weekend in one of them every week, he could not visit them all in a year. However, he mostly visited the Evskinograd Palace in Varna, "Tsarska Bistritsa" in Borovets and several of the hunting lodges, later also the newly built residence "Perla" near the mouth of the Ropotamo. In some he was only once.
Hunting was a noble hobby among the highest party circles throughout Eastern Europe...
Lenin was a hunter, Stalin was a hunter, Khrushchev was a hunter. Brezhnev, Walter Ulbricht, Ceausescu, Tito, Fidel Castro, Kim Il Sung, Enver Hoxha - they were all hunters. Marx had written nothing about the hunting passions of the "revolutionary leaders," but he had not even foreseen that in the transitional period to communism hunting would remain an enduring privilege. As organized killings for pleasure would be the most sophisticated entertainment among the elites created by working common people.
How Communism worked- A strict Communist Hierarchy built on personally vetted people or put another way Friendly Circles- Ever since the resistance to Bulgaria's alliance with Gremania called Partisan Brigades the elite of the Communist Nomenklatura in Bulgaria was born. The partisans (the left movement in Bulgaria is a completely rural phenomenon, unlike in Western Europe and its intellectual roots there) eventually began to work for the villages from which they came. Basically, an updated generic communal system. And the more partisans a village had, the more a nomenklatura emerged around them. A great example is Lesichovo, Pazardzhik- 10 generals were born from the guerrilla troops, and they accordingly created a top administration of people born in Lesichovo and around in all the important ministries. After all, the most respected ambassador in Moscow was from Lesichovo- Zhulev, who was later ambassador to the USA.
The other important places for the communist circles were the party structures, the militery service and the hunting groups. The hunting parties were the elite circles, and hunting was considered a privilege of the upper class.
An informal circle with great influence in power during Zhivkov's time was his hunting party. With it, besides having fun, he consulted and shared ideas with the academicians Angel Balevsky and Panteleye Zarev, General Hristo Ruskov (the so-called Hare's General, chairman of the Bulgarian Hunting and Fishing Union, and close to the First from the time of the partisan movement), the poet Georgi Dzhagarov, the actor Stefan Getsov (whom Zhivkov later began to invite less often to hunt). Lyubomir Levchev and the sculptor Velichko Minekov were also regular participants in the troop, though less frequently (see here for more details on all the high-ranking hunters). The hunt with the First occasionally includes some other writer, specially invited. Emilian Stanev was invited frequently until his death in 1979. All of them, in addition to being hunters, were also empowered with positions in the State Council, the Central Committee of the Communist Party, deputies, and various nomenclature positions in the hierarchy of the state. This distribution of posts was one of the peculiarities of the regime of the time. You could not just be elected chairman of the Writers' Union, a member of the Central Committee of the Communist Party, or a member of the State Council, or a deputy. First, they can't nominate you if there is no invitation or blessing from above. From Todor Zhivkov. For chairmen of the most important creative unions, as for members and candidates for the Politburo, it is a matter of Zhivkov's personal choice.
The godfather of Trendaphil Velichkov's child is Evgeni Martinov Abadzhiev, the most prominent "Anti-Communist" of Pazardzhik. Evgeni Abadzhiev is also the President of the Hunting and Fishing Union "Sokol 1893" in Pazardzhik.
It is interesting that the Archbishop of Plovdiv Nikolai performed the baptism. Extremely rare and a great honour given to few. On the West and Evil- the wisdoms of Plovdiv Archbishop Nikolai (theangel.today)
The President of the Hunting and Fishing Union "Sokol 1893" in Pazardzhik Evgeni offers flowers to the victims of the totalitarian regime in Pazardzhik:
Views on Politics, Economics, Society and Geopolitics
On social media (Facebook) the District Governor of Pazardzhik is more than active in expressing his positions. At the moment when the COVID pandemic started, Mr. Velichkov expressed a whole palette of positions and solutions to the extremely critical problem for Bulgaria.
"Great nations like the Russian, the Cuban and the extra-Welsh and the Chinese send - People, medics and all specialists into the mouth of the terror and contagion of humanity and humanity. BOW!" -Quite a firm and clear position expressing in full force the international orientation of the District Governor of Pazardzhik! As probably to the generations of Bulgarian Socialists educated and formed by Mr. Trendafil Velichkov.
"Countries like Cuba and China have a huge advantage in the fight against epidemics because state power is able to intervene in public life very drastically - including with military measures."- The District Governor of Pazardzhik is an ardent supporter of the Military Regimes and Strong States!
"A massive economic crisis, which all economists are predicting, is good to plan - yes, to plan by those in power.
- There is no doubt there will be an outflow of foreign investment - the biggest in our country is from the money of people working abroad and yes it will decrease it will not stop but still.
- As I wrote a few weeks ago it is important that we find sectors of the economy where we are world class, and past the crown it has been seen that we have - to the amazement of the powers that be and not just the struggling ones - weaving and garment industries.
Now is also the time for planning in agriculture, because we will have to eat what we produce ourselves - with incentives now, we will ensure that farmers, breeders, beekeepers, etc., will produce for years to come quality Bulgarian goods at competitive prices.
- If anyone ever thought it was time to get back into Bulgarian state hands - the gold and other concessions - now is the time. After the crisis, money will have no value - the bubble will be burst and only gold and the price of metals and stones will guarantee state sovereignty.
AND MOST IMPORTANTLY, PRESIDENT AND GOVERNMENT MAKE A NATIONAL ECONOMIC STAFF OF EXPERTS TO DEAL WITH THE ECONOMIC IMPLICATIONS to introduce these and other measures.
Don't wait - it's already too late!"
I like it best when the men who have not been in the barracks jump against a Bulgarian general. I am grabbing the holster of my gun!
There is a system that works in an off duty situation (it has been tested in war - and excuze moa' this same general has seen live - while you were looking in the mirror, how nice you are).
Order - execution - period. Comments, questions and poses like see how clever and smart I am after it's all over.- The positive attitude towards strong hand and martial law.
And 'brothers' don't these Italians have an Interior Ministry and a prosecutor to arrest Russophiles - I am disappointed, where are the Euro-Arlantic gender values going! I DON'T KNOW - communist Cubans, Venezuela - horror outright horror....- His position on homophobia in Bulgaria and Italy is interesting.
What is all this roar about the collapse of stock exchanges and capital markets?
We reap the speculation, we grieve for lost
money earned without an ounce of production, we can't survive the loss of cosmic commissions to the Sio, brokers, dealers, etc.
Capitalism, is not perfect comrades - it is damn near imperfect.
Keep an eye on what's going on in the commodity markets, think about what production we can revive, rebuild and have as a nation.
The crisis will call the answer to the question - can there be an economy without manufacturing, and without an industry or industries at least two, at a world leading level and the answer is - No? Enough yelling about other people's money!- On the day of the announcement of the COVID lockdown in Bulgaria, a very emotional statement