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Four Arrested in Sofia as Protesters Clash with Police

Society | February 17, 2013, Sunday // 20:38| Views: 1352 | Comments: 0
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Bulgaria: Four Arrested in Sofia as Protesters Clash with Police Protesters in downtown Sofia clashed with police who tried to cut short the rally heading for the headquarters of power utility CEZ. Photo by Sofia Photo Agency

Four people have been detained as protesters in downtown Sofia clashed with police who tried to cut short the rally heading for the headquarters of power utility CEZ, the interior ministry said.

Protesters hurled rocks and glass bottles at the nearby building of right-wing party UDF and the security forces, who responded by pushing them away and dispersing the rally.

Initial reports said there were casualties, but the information was not confirmed.

Tens of thousands hit the streets in Bulgaria's capital Sofia on Sunday against the excesses of power and heating utilities in a continuation of recent wave of protests over high electricity and heating bills.

The disgruntled citizens first gathered in front of parliament and threw tomatoes and apples at it in protest against the excesses of power and heating utilities.

Later on the protesters blocked Eagles' Bridge.

Another rally was staged at Bulgaria's Economy Ministry, with participating protesters of all ages, including mothers with young kid.

The protesters were chanting "mafia" under the windows of the ministry building blockading traffic on the Rakosvki Str.

The demonstrators demand the nationalization of Bulgaria's three power utilities – CEZ, EVN, and Energo-Pro, with the National Electric Company NEK assuming their responsibilities, the publication of all secret contracts in Bulgaria's energy sector, holding those who signed secret energy contracts responsible, abolishing NEK's obligation to buy out any produced electricity, as well as individual contracts with Sofia heating utility Toplofikatsiya that can be terminated on a month's notice.

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Tags: sofia, Bulgaria, protests, CEZ
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