Wanted by the Kremlin Journalist Christo Grozev feels Threatened to Return to Bulgaria
Investigative journalist Christo Grozev admitted that he feels threatened to return to Bulgaria. He told Parliament's Control Committee that there was round-the-clock police protection in the country where he and his family reside.
For Christo Grozev, there is no doubt that his activity as an investigative journalist for the past 7 years is the reason for his designation as “wanted” by the Russian Federation. He received a black stamp for entering Russia back in 2016. Therefore, the thesis of the Russian ambassador to our country, Eleonora Mitrofanova, that the search for him is only a message to him, that he is not welcome in Russia, is impossible.
The Bulgarian political formations: “We Continue the Change” and “Democratic Bulgaria” believe that decisive measures should be taken to protect the journalist. GERB-SDS insist that Bulgaria build a mechanism for sanctions against the Russian Federation. The pro-Russian "Vazrazhdane" asked for what reason Grozev is titled as an investigative journalist.
For the second week in a row, Chisto Grozev still does not know why the Russian Federation is looking for him. In front of the Bulgarian deputies, he referred to information from "RIA Novosti" that the accusation against him was based on the law on fake news.
Grozev: "An investigation published a month and a half ago identified a Russian secret department responsible for cruise missiles that caused many innocent victims."
Grozev cited his work as an investigative journalist for the past seven years as a reason. He rejected the version of the Russian ambassador in Bulgaria that he was wanted only in Russia.
“I received a black stamp for entering Russia back in 2016”, he said.
Grozev also told about his investigations with a Bulgarian trace.
"In recent years, I have information that an investigation is underway and charges have been brought against the suspects in one of our investigations for the poisoning of Mr. Emilian Gebrev in 2015 by representatives of the Russian military intelligence in Bulgaria. On the other hand, the investigation has been suspended in order to gain access for the accused".
Grozev stated that after the Russian ambassador to our country was summoned to the foreign ministry, he communicated only with law enforcement agencies and the National Security Service, which were the only ones from Bulgaria who showed interest in him.
"This is an attack on free journalism outside of Russia. It is a threat to all journalists in the world. Bulgaria is obliged to demand explanations and to tell Russia that this is an unacceptable practice."
“We Continue the Change” believes that decisive measures should be taken regarding the protection of Christo Grozev.
Petar Petrov, "We Continue the Change": "The Bulgarian state must take immediate and decisive measures against the announcement at the end of the past year that the Russian Federation wanted investigative journalist Christo Grozev."
The party pointed out that it is of great importance for our national security what the progress of the work of the Bulgarian prosecutor's office is and whether it serves the Bulgarian interest.
Daniel Mitov, GERB SDS: "It is good to think about calling on the Bulgarian government to undertake a mechanism for applying sanctions against the Russian Federation. There is no such mechanism, the former government did nothing in this direction since the beginning of the war".
"Vazrazhdane" asked why Grozev called himself an investigative journalist.
Nikolay Drenchev, "Vazrazhdane": "We have as a memory of his work in Bulgaria - speculative deals, attempts to control the media, problems with the Bulgarian justice system and generally things that are inconsistent with this heroic halo".
The party proposed to hand over Christo Grozev to Russian justice.
Ivaylo Mirchev, “Democratic Bulgaria”: “In this case, we are talking about a country that has been designated by the European Parliament as a country that supports terrorism, which country has declared a Bulgarian citizen wanted.”
The Ministry of Internal Affairs does not yet have information about the reason for the search for Christo Grozev.
In Kalofer, acting Prime Minister Galab Donev commented on the incident as follows:
"Regardless of the fact that he was not on the continent of Europe, on a completely different continent - respectively, the Bulgarian security services, together with the partner services, created conditions for Christo Grozev to return to the home where he lives in Vienna without hindrance, so his security is guaranteed, a constant connection is maintained with him".
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