“The expulsion from Bulgaria of the Russian journalist accused of espionage is a political decision,” Tihomir Bezlov, a security expert from the Center for the Study of Democracy, told Bgonair.
A day ago, the State Agency for National Security (DANS) expelled from Bulgaria the correspondent of the newspaper “Rosiyskaya Gazeta” Alexander Gatsak for “activities that pose a threat to the national security of Bulgaria”. As expected, Moscow condemned another case of a Russian expelled from our country and threatened with retaliatory actions. Later, the BNR correspondent in Moscow, Angel Grigorov, was summoned for an interview at the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Russia.
According to Bezlov, the way in which the Russian citizen was taken out of our country is a way for Bulgaria to show and strengthen its position towards Russia against the background of the ongoing war in Ukraine.
“It is possible to do it quietly, whether we wanted to is another question. We are trying to show that we are not great friends of Russia, as we once were. We are trying to show that we are a country in solidarity with the European Union and NATO, that we support Ukraine,” Bezlov believes.
According to him, the political situation in our country determines whether Bulgaria will expel more Russian citizens in the future.
Our relations with Russia have been multi-layered for years, and the war in Ukraine has only intensified, problems that have existed for decades and there will always be a risk for our country, especially in a war situation, Bezlov is convinced.
“In my view, we are at continued risk. War is a very serious risk. We see such problems all the time, starting with agencies and ending up with such gross things as finding mines near our beaches and our sea towns,” the expert believes.
Bezlov also commented on the case of the Lebanese who called for jihad after the beginning of the conflict between Israel and Palestine, who was captured in our country. According to the analyst, the risks for Bulgaria of more serious protests and threats to the country from foreign citizens are low.
“We also had Palestinian protests, so to speak, but if we compare them to the protests in Western European capitals, they were quite weak and few in number,” the expert pointed out.
Against the background of the developing war in the Middle East, Bezlov believes that Bulgaria is a kind of “transit country”, but at the same time there is a problem with certain minorities from these regions, due to the refugee channels, as they create the largest organized crime groups in the state, the security expert was categorical.
“We have never had such a large number of people working organized for the criminal world, because these networks are connected with networks in Western Europe, Africa, the Middle East. This is a huge number of people present in the country,” added the guest.