Turkey Scraps Bulgarian College Diplomas
Turkey is suspending the recognition of Bulgarian-issued college diplomas for an indefinite period of time.
On grounds that forgery of exam marks and college diplomas has reached the dimensions of organized crime in Bulgaria, the southern neighbor advises all of its aspiring university students to refrain from applying for Bulgarian schools.
The decision has been made by the Turkish University Education Council, the institution accrediting foreign diplomas.
Its official site notes that documents of students from Bulgaria will no longer be legalized. It further warns transfers from Bulgarian colleges to Turkish ones are not being accepted, while the documents of those who have applied for accreditation will be put on hold.
According to the Bulgarian Trud (Labor) daily, citing the online "OFFNews," Turkey has warned as early as the month of May about the planned move and has requested a meeting with senior officials to clarify the issue.
The source of information about the alleged forgeries is, reportedly, the Turkish Foreign Ministry, which has collected the evidence.
Evelina Hristova, spokesperson of Bulgaria's Education Minister, Sergey Ignatov, informs that the Ministry has not received any official correspondence from Turkey on the issue, and vows a check in the case. The Bulgarian Foreign Ministry also denies being notified about any such problem.
Hristova has further refuted reports that the President of the Technical University in the Black Sea city of Varna has sent a letter to Ignatov, alarming him of Turkey's decision and asking for assistance because the school has a large enrolment of Turkish students.
The decision is not final, and the recognition is frozen for the time being, but it is expected to harm Bulgarian colleges in the middle of the admissions and enrolment campaign.
Bulgaria is an attractive point for education of young people from its southern neighbor because it is a member of the EU. Unofficial data lists thenumber of Turkish students at 6 000 with the majority of them studying in technical and medical schools.
The other southern neighbor of Bulgaria, Greece also insists that Bulgarian college diplomas have no value because exams and the entire documents can be purchased and there is no need of studying.
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