MEP added to list of enemies of Ukraine as fears grow for those named

Bulgaria: MEP warns EU of ‘corruption’ within the country

Tensions have surged in Bulgaria’s capital after a prominent Ukrainian website, Myrotvorets, added Bulgarian policymakers to its blacklist of enemies.

President Rumen Radev, along with three parliamentary forces, including pro-European GERB and pro-Russian Vazrazhdane, as well as the Bulgarian Socialist Party, have demanded an immediate government investigation into the matter.

The list, which now includes the Deputy Speaker of the Bulgarian Parliament and a Member of the European Parliament, has ignited fury among Bulgarian officials.

The Ukrainian embassy, however, has distanced itself from the controversy, asserting that the website has no affiliation with Ukrainian state institutions and does not represent the official policy of Ukraine.

Myrotvorets, established in 2014, operates as a database of individuals deemed enemies of Ukraine.

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Notably, the site has targeted a wide range of figures from around the world, including renowned personalities like Henry Kissinger, rock legend Roger Waters, and Croatian President Zoran Milanovic. Now, prominent Bulgarian figures such as Kristian Vigenin from the Bulgarian Socialist Party, the Deputy Speaker of the Bulgarian Parliament, and MEP Elena Yoncheva (S&D) find themselves on the contentious list.

The escalating situation has garnered responses from Bulgarian politicians, with socialist party leader Cornelia Ninova denouncing the website’s actions.

She said: “The Bulgarian state and the ambassador of Ukraine should contact Mr. Zelensky. After his visit (to Sofia on July 6), everything that Bulgaria could give was given – warehouses were emptied, weapons were given, aid was given, humanitarian aid, and we accepted refugees. And Bulgaria gets this! For scientific, creative and journalistic purposes, kill Bulgarians around the world. Simply absurd.”

In a bid to address the issue, the Bulgarian Socialist Party has called for a definitive and clear stance from the state, government, and security services regarding the inclusion of Bulgarian names on the list. They are determined to involve the State Agency for National Security and the parliamentary committee to thoroughly investigate the matter.

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President Radev emphasised the urgency of the situation by drawing a parallel to a previous incident involving threats to Bulgarian investigative journalist Hristo Grozev, stressing that the state acted swiftly then and should do the same now.

GERB leader Boyko Borissov also chimed in, assuring that immediate action was being taken. He assigned Deputy Prime Minister Mariya Gabriel and her Deputy to launch an investigation into the origins of the controversial website during a foreign policy parliamentary committee meeting.

Meanwhile, the pro-Russian radical Vazrazhdane party leader, Kostadin Kostadinov, has demanded a response from the state and called for a thorough investigation. He has further urged state protection for those listed on the website.

The Ukrainian embassy in Sofia clarified that Myrotvorets’ activities are not associated with Ukrainian state institutions and do not represent the official policy of Ukraine. Instead, they claim that the website draws information from publicly available sources for research, creative, and journalistic purposes.

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However, this explanation has not mollified concerns within Bulgaria. The Union of Bulgarian Journalists has sounded the alarm, highlighting that the website has listed Bulgarian journalists for execution since 2018 due to their professional work. They believe that European institutions should be alerted about the existence of such a site in a country aspiring for EU membership.

MEP Elena Yoncheva, whose name also appears on the website, expressed outrage at the inclusion of journalists. She asserted that the owner of the website is known and has no affiliation with the Ukrainian government.

She said: “I found out by accident that I was on the site Peacemaker. It contains the names of journalists, activists, and politicians. Some of them were killed. (…) In 2019, for just one day, the name of Olena Zelenska, wife of Volodymyr Zelenskyy, was on the list of enemies, at that time, he was a candidate for the president of Ukraine.

“It was deleted immediately after Zelenska’s explanations that in 2014 she mistakenly shared a position of pro-Russian propagandists on Facebook because, at that time, she did not know how to do it in such a way as to express indignation.”

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