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16 Jul 2020 | 02:39 PM UTC

Bulgaria: Thousands of anti-government protesters rally in Sofia July 16 /update 3

Thousands of anti-government protesters rally in Sofia on July 16; avoid all protest activity

sécurité
BGR

Event

Thousands of Bulgarians gathered outside the Council of Ministers in Sofia on Thursday evening, July 16, for an eight-consecutive day of anti-government protests. The protesters are calling for the resignation of Prime Minister Boyko Borissov amid allegations of widespread government corruption. Dozens of people have been arrested since the protests began on Thursday, July 9. Heightened security measures and localized traffic disruptions have been reported in the vicinity of the demonstration.

Further protests over the issue are possible in the near term.

Context

Protests were sparked in Bulgaria after a raid was conducted on Thursday, July 9, by the Prosecutor-General's Office on the presidential headquarters, whom protesters and opponents believe was ordered by Prime Minister Borisov. President Rumen Radev's legal affairs and anti-corruption secretary and his security and defense adviser were detained for questioning and their offices searched as part of probes into alleged influence-peddling and disclosure of state secrets. The searches sparked public anger and brought thousands of demonstrators onto the streets of Sofia to condemn the raids as an attack by the government and the prosecutor-general against Radev.

Advice

Individuals in Bulgaria are advised to monitor developments to the situation, avoid all demonstrations and political gatherings as a precaution, and adhere to all instructions issued by local authorities.

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