Le Monde: Bulgaria Is Weak Link in Fight Against Jihadist Networks
Kapitan Andreevo, the checkpoint on Bulgaria’s border with Turkey, has turned into the new front line in the war against the jihadist networks being waged by the West, according to an article published by Le Monde on Tuesday.
Jacques Follorou, a special correspondent of the French daily newspaper, writes that after controls were stepped-up at airports, Bulgaria has actually become the easiest land route to reach Turkey – the last stage before entering the territory controlled by Islamic State militants in Syria.
“Cars, trucks and buses are travelling day and night along this route, which is considered the best way to discreetly leave Europe both by intelligence services and candidates for jihad,” Follorou says in the article carrying the title “Bulgaria: weak link in the fight against Islamic State”.
While Bulgaria is member of the EU and forms part of the bloc’s external border, it is not part of its Schengen borderless area. The country’s willingness to join Schengen gives it access to part of the area’s common database but despite efforts “to be the good student in the fight against terrorism the gaps in the anti-jihadist net remain”, according to the article.
To highlight his point, the author is citing Bulgarian Interior Ministry data, according to which "the number of candidates to join the jihadists skyrocketed in 2013 as several hundred people entered Syria via the country."
You can read the full article here [FR].
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