Bulgaria Exposed to Anti-Western Propaganda - US Ambassador Nominee
Bulgaria is facing the problem of propaganda disseminated by "paid" local and media and certain groups, Eric Seth Rubin, nominated to be the next US ambassador to Bulgaria, has said.
In his words, these are trying to convince Bulgarians they are not welcome among Western allies.
His comments singling out Russian daily "propaganda" that targets Bulgaria and "other Eastern European allies" were in a reply to a question during his first hearing before a Senate Committee last week.
In September, the White House announced President Barack Obama had put the name of Eric Rubin as Washington's next Ambassador to Bulgaria.
Rubin recalled in his Testimony [PDF] to the Committee visiting Bulgaria for the first time in 1991, helping organize the first bilateral security dialogue and military-to-military exchanges between Washington and Sofia.
"Bulgarians have achieved much in the years since – Bulgaria today is a staunch NATO Ally that lies in a strategic location at the southeastern edge of the European Union. But there is much more that we can and should do together," he announced.
He reminded the audience that "when Secretary Kerry visited Bulgaria in January, he recognized the important collaboration between our countries, and announced jointly with Bulgaria the formation of bilateral working groups on National Security and Defense, Energy Security, Education and People-to-People Ties, and the Rule of Law. These working groups have been so well received that we recently added a Counterterrorism working group, which first met last week."
Rubin called Bulgaria "a stalwart Ally" despite having "the second-lowest GDP per capita in the Alliance". He praised the country's effort to participate in training exercises and its appreciation for the importance of conterterrorism.
The nominee also put emphasis on Bulgaria's dependence on Russia for fossil fuels.
Senate is yet to confirm the nomination.
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